Percussionist and composer Eisenstadt has through his almost 30 years of braving the improv and free jazz waters, never been afraid to be quiet. In fact, his patience is perfect on this release, where the tunes are given time not only find their expression, but to move slowly around ideas until the band is ready to pounce.
Eisenstadt has assembled quite a list of players from California, and they all contribute to the depth of the sound. There are two tracks here, ?Non Violence? and ?Relief?, the former consisting of three extended sections, the latter featuring four. With a ix of modern composition and free improv, these pieces never overwhelm, but retain an edginess that fuels even the more quiet moments.
Especially valuable are oboist Kyle Bruckmann and Phillip Greenlief on b-flat clarinet; their sublte, sharp yet angular fills help create a noir-ish feel to ?Non-Violence, aided by the brittle guitar work of both Bill Horvitz and Noah Phillips. Haunting and fun at once, this piece resonates like a memory, comforting and familiar, but just jarring enough to create space for new ideas.
?Relief? is somewhat darker, driven as it is by Sara Schoenbeck?s bassoon, and Mark weaver?s Tuba. Nine Winds? own Vinny Golia adds his surprising bass clarinet to the mix, to moving effect. Never short of ideas, avenues or partners in sound, Eisenstadt?s latest is gorgeous haunting and daunting. 7/10 -- Mike Wood (16 October, 2006)