7k Oaks, Entelechy
Alfred 23 Harth – Tenor Sax, Bass Clarinet, Pocket Trumpet, Electronics
Luca Venitucci – Keyboards
Massimo Pupillo – Bass
Fabrizio Spera – Drums
I read a review of this on Stef’s blog and was intrigued enough to give it a go, especially since I’ve been a fan of Alfred 23 Harth since his POPendingEYE came out back in 1992. I’ve hardly seen his name since, however. Entelechy (“a realization or actuality as opposed to a potentiality”) grabs you from the start, with electronic noise, bass feedback and skittering, nervous drums setting a menacing tone, Hearth joining in like the unholy love child of Albert Ayler and Peter Brotzmann. The intensity lets up only in spots on the first track, Seon Avalanche, but through it all there's a cohesion between the four; they listen and react like the most seasoned jazz group.
The middle section of the concert, marked on the disc as Tracks 2 and 3, lets in a little more light, and Hearth gives an impassioned reading of Chic's (!) At Last I Am Free to close the set that made the hair on my arms stand up, his gruff tenor cutting right to your soul.
It's a white knuckle ride, so strap on your strap on and brace yourself…