slight freedom, jeff parker’s first ever solo record, presents the first opportunity to hear the guitarist in fully self-revealed circumstances. recorded 2013 & ’14 in the hollywood hills as he relocated from chicago to los angeles, parker combines the dark tonal palette & percussive attack he’s long been known for with real-time processing elements & field recordings, deftly crafting a unique world of solo guitar music --multilingual, mysterious, alive with extraordinary sonic events, with a sturdy intelligence in charge & a raw homestyle vibe. the record is yet another defining moment for parker in 2016, a year that already includes a brilliant ensemble album (the new breed) & tortoise’s 25th anniversary tour & record (the catastrophist).
parker’s title composition sets the album’s cavernous mood. terse lines & ricocheting loops morph into a gnarly ambient section that resembles neil young droning out over a vg+ copy of discreet music. parker creates a different sort of ambient space in his take on frank ocean’s 'super rich kids,' bending the melody around a bossa nova rhythm into a moodsville tone poem. parker makes an extraordinary long-form statement out of chad taylor’s ‘mainz,’ a piece he first recorded with taylor & chris lopes on the album bright light in winter. twice the length of the trio recording, the multi-layered soliloquy finds parker leaping from the high rung to damn near orchestral heights, pushing his techniques & concepts to their breaking points. it’s one of the great solo performances you’ll hear from a musician this year. to say “lush life” comes with formidable baggage is an understatement. parker achieves instant classic status with a rendition that sounds beamed-in from a decommissioned satellite --burned out, covered in space grit, yet still formally nuanced & beautifully reflective of strayhorn’s world-weary lyrics.
twenty years into the game it’s a joy for eremite to present work by an artist who’s clearly taking his music to the next level.
pitchfork 8.0 review
new york times best albums 2016
NPR top ten solo guitar records of 2016
john mulvey's 'favourite albums 2016' at uncut
philip sherburne #6 album 2016
soundohm best of 2016
reckless records 2016 employee best of lists
magnet magazine best of 2016 jazz/improv
released December 27, 2020
Jeff Parker: electric guitar, effects, samplers
recorded 2013 & 2014, Hollywood
producers: Parker & Michael Ehlers
engineers: Ehlers, Emmett Kelly, Griffin Rodriguez
mastering: Helge Sten
supported by 143 fans who also own “Slight Freedom”
A truly incredible listening experience fusing Jazz, R&B, Soul, and more all together in an impressive and amazing release that demonstrates an awesome talent and a strong musical vision and ideal.
Highly recommended... rikm