Spun Tree

📷: Ben Gerstein

Michaël Attias – alto saxophone
Ralph Alessi – trumpet
Matt Mitchell – piano
Sean Conly – bass
Tom Rainey – drums

Whether soloing in tandem or executing contrapuntal motifs, Attias and Alessi make a consummate pair… The quintet invests each cut with a subtle, haunting ambience, providing the session with a cohesive emotional center…A compelling release from an artist whose selective output rarely accentuates his compositional abilities, Spun Tree is an exceptional album, revealing additional layers with each spin.
– Troy CollinsPoint of Departure

Rooted in his past collaborations with visionary masters Anthony Braxton and the late, great Paul Motian, Attias’ Spun Tree formed in 2009—assembling Ralph Alessi, Matt Mitchell, Sean Conly and Tom Rainey—and in 2012 released its eponymous debut record on Clean Feed, his fourth release on the label and his first to explore the sonority of the classic alto/trumpet frontline. If the music on his two previous Clean Feed releases (Renku in Coimbra and Twines of Colesion) was about finding compositional shape through collective improvisation, Spun Tree reversed the balance in returning to the more epic forms of Credo, his first. In a journey from negative clarity to a negation of negation which equals joy, the record’s eight compositions—four large-scale multi-panel pieces and four “simpler” ones—balance size and density with enough air, intuition, rhythmic agility and interplay to keep all the branches of this tree spinning and dancing in the sunlight.