Jeff Coffin/Helen Gillet


(Ear Up)


Jeff Coffin and Helen Gillet can fill in the holes with multi-tracking, or they can let their lines twist about each other like two vines. The Sun Never Says has Coffin’s soprano saxophone and Gillet’s cello pursuing contrapuntal lines akin to twin prayers, while Lazy Drag Jig starts out riding on a funky pizzicato cello figure that becomes a tearaway groove, with Coffin laying down three horn parts and Roy “Futureman” Wooten guesting on cajon.It’s lively f un, but does not have the impact of the elegiac Round and Around, begun by Coffin’s tin whistle, before his soprano (echoed by a wordless vocal) offers its lament over a sparse, autumnal cello ostinato.

Unzen has the tenor sprawling over a walking cello line, which gradually unravels into a more intricate dialogue pushing at the sonic boundaries. The multi-tracking works a treat on Sometimes Springtime, the hypnotic melody made opulent with soprano and bass clarinet, and quilted layers of cello capped by Gillet’s singing in French. Wooten returns on the coiling, Middle-Eastern Lampsi, while the sweeping journey of The Sandman narrowly avoids pastiche. I prefer the rawness of just tenor and cello on Should I Stand and the deep mystery of Ernest Reiseger’s Do You Still.