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Matthew Shipp Harmony And Abyss

Between collaborations with artists like El-P, pianist Matthew Shipp has returned to an ongoing project: a set of small-group jazz records fully integrating bits of hip-hop and electronics. Shipp's working group has ripped through several records in this vein, and Harmony and Abyss showcases the near-telepathic rapport they have earned. The improv-oriented pieces fly by at high tempos, with Shipp's percussive piano at the center of the storm. But the group works so well that Shipp hardly appears on open, electronic-oriented pieces such as "String Theory," where twisted textures and noises take center stage.

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