AUM Fidelity

David S. Ware Cooper-Moore William Parker Muhammad Ali
.....Planetary Unknown ..AAUM068

CD $13

Passage Wudang (21:56) (MP3 Excerpt)
Shift (7:34)

Duality is One (7:00)
Divination (9:27)
(MP3 Excerpt)
Crystal Palace (3:40)

Divination Unfathomable (9:26)
(MP3 Excerpt)
Ancestry Supramental (13:25)
(MP3 Excerpt)


David S. Ware: saxophones
: piano

William Parker
: bass
Muhammad Ali
: drums

All compositions by David S. Ware, Cooper-Moore, William Parker, Muhammad Ali;
published by Gandharvasphere/Daswa (ASCAP)
P+C 2011 AUM Fidellity
Recorded on November 23. 2010 at Systems Two Studio, Brooklyn

Cover paintings by Gilbert E. Young

“The level of invention is staggering, Cooper-Moore matching Ware in every trill, arpeggio and overtone-laden growl with swoops, chordal passages and inter-registral showers of crystal. If Ware gets tonal, as on his solo beginning to “Shift”, Cooper-Moore is right there, expanding on every implication in Ware’s vast vocabulary. The team of William Parker and Muhammad Ali is no less engaging.”
 —Marc Medwin, The New York City Jazz Record

“David S. Ware plays with such solemn power and majesty that his soloing begs comparisons to mountains or waterfalls. In fact, it’s hard to avoid ecological metaphors when discussing his latest album, Planetary Unknown, so completely do Ware, pianist Cooper-Moore, bassist William Parker, and drummer Muhammad Ali create their own world of sound, a landscape in which one can sense the presence of the divine in much the same way that Walden inspired Thoreau or Yosemite John Muir. Listening to this quartet makes Transcendentalists of us all.”
 —Ed Hazell, Point Of Departure

Planetary Unknown marks the first time this quartet played together, though that isn't apparent, given the music's deep roots and connections...the program has the air of a twenty-first century classic about it.”
 —Nic Jones,

“...almost immediately the collective force of this stellar group kicks in, evolving dynamic forms that revitalize yet again the language of free jazz. Cecil Taylor once observed that John Coltrane’s tone was beautiful because it was functional, meaning that it was always involved in actually saying something, never an empty display of his formidable technique. Such functional beauty is the business of this quartet.”
 —Julian Cowley, The Wire

“This is a really extraordinary album and is highly recommended...David S. Ware is one of a kind and every note is a treasure.”
 —Tim Niland, Music and More

“Unified by shared histories, the quartet's inspired interplay yields passages of spontaneous invention that are staggering in their complexity and intuitive concordance, upholding Ware's transcendental spirituality with palpable conviction. Expounding on the diverse lineage of post-war free jazz traditions with unbridled passion and attentive congeniality, Planetary Unknown is a tour de force of free improvisation from four masters of the form.”
 —Troy Collins,

“The four musicians had never worked together as a group when they gathered in Brooklyn in late 2010, but the seven tracks they laid down are gravity-defying.”
 —Marcus O'Dair, Jazzwise

Planetary Unknown documents an epic occurrence and its commercial release is itself the same. Major circles arc together and synchronize anew here. Mighty and majestic. David S. Ware and company raise the bar on artistic heights, in all disciplines, world-wide, once again.

In late November 2010, four men arrived at Brooklyn's Systems Two Studio to record an album. The web of musical, personal and spiritual connections that brought them together at that particular time and place is astonishing.

Ware and Cooper-Moore shared formative years in Boston, where they talked and played music all day, until in 1973 the pull of New York's jazz scene called them home. Cooper-Moore, Ware and William Parker were heavyweights of the Downtown loft scene, playing spaces like Ali's Alley and Studio Rivbea, experiences that equipped Ware and Parker for the extended periods each would spend within the Cecil Taylor Unit, and for their eighteen years of artistic refinement and growth inside the David S. Ware Quartet.

Muhammad Ali, an early loft regular and drummer on Albert Ayler's Music Is The Healing Force of the Universe and Alan Shorter's Orgasm, had already relocated to Paris with Frank Wright, when, in 1976, Cecil Taylor's Unit came to town. Ware met Ali on that visit, and both men made a mental note that one day they would play together. Ali's presence here is a direct blood-link back to the birth of free music in America – it was his brother, the late and much-missed Rashied Ali, who replaced Elvin Jones in the John Coltrane Quartet and with whom Coltrane recorded Interstellar Space, his catalytic 1967 album of saxophone/percussion duos, a fraternal inheritance respectfully acknowledged here in Ware and Ali's duo “Duality Is One”.

Imagine the scene as all those shared histories came together inside that Brooklyn studio space. “Muhammad was already playing when I walked into the studio,” Ware recalls. “I heard him live for the first time at that moment and thought, man, he is carrying the whole history of jazz drums in his playing.”

“The last 100 years of jazz, there was our rehearsal [for this record]” Ware explains. Let's get it on record now that this music is created as a way of learning about the future.

Planetary Unknown, the group, manifest glimpses of the future all-together for the first time on November 23, 2010 when this album was made. Their concert debut took place at Vision Festival on June 10, 2011. Their EU concert debut took place on August 27th at the Saalfelden Jazz Festival.

AUM Fidelity