Downtown Music Gallery


– Freedom is Space for the Spirit (FMR 425; UK)

Featuring Francois Carrier on alto sax & Chinese oboe, Alexey Lapin on piano and Michel Lampert on drums. Recorded in St. Petersburg in May of 2014. The Quebec-based duo of Francois Carrier and Michel Lambert have some two dozen releases as a duo, trio or quartet and have worked with Steve Beresford, Mat Maneri and Paul Bley. This appears to be their fifth disc with Russian pianist Alexey Lapin. Mr. Lapin is a Russian pianist who has has more than a dozen discs on the Leo label . I caught the Carrier/Lapin Duo at the Victo Festival a few years back was impressed by the ever-evolving creativity. The instrumentation here is similar to the another Russian avant/jazz trio – the Ganelin Trio, a legendary outfit who were one of the first free/jazz units to emerge from Russia, long before the fall of the Iron Curtain (formed in 1968, first recording 1976). This trio does sound like they have been together for a long while, laying back when necessary. After an intense, sped up first section, the trio finally calm down for some warm, laid back, free-flowing, spirit. This cross-cultural trio have established their own sound, rarely going too far out, occasionally dipping into some lyrical passages…

There is some truly lovely, spiritual sounding music here that feels just right.

– Bruce Lee Gallanter,