Improvisation worthy of serious consideration should always include a degree of hostility in a positive, and ultimately creative sense. Or – at the very least – set the listener uncomfortable from more than a single point of view, among them the inevitable human tendency to classification. In truth Earnear, debut recording of the namesake trio, answers to these and other questions, having given this reviewer quite a hard time – in spite of repeated attempts – for its absolute unsusceptibility to a rigorous formalization of its nature.
The eight tracks introduce to a responsive synergy, explicated in diverse types of probing by players in obvious command of their instrumental attitudes. Aspects related to the aggregation of voices in search of a common thread are immediately visible in the opening “Imprint”, one of the most agitated pieces together with the similarly animated “Stifling Contretemps”. The talkative interplay, the will to show the potentialities of the respective instruments, the near-immoderate involuntary counterpoint give sometimes the idea – if you pardon the oxymoron – of an amicable fight. Across lucid-to-chaotic structures, acoustic representations of perspicaciousness materialize.
However, Earnear reveal their finest intuitions while intent in attentively exploring and enhancing the space around the pitches (and derivations thereof). Unequivocally attributing equal evocative power to rich resonances and exiguous noises, they generate truly beautiful sonorities (“Dream Theory”, “Airfoil”). The copious harmonic content of each timbral manifestation helps in eliciting secretive chiaroscuros and intriguing ruptures of silence. “Restraint” is not an unknown word for these musicians; still, the quiet procreation of diminutive sonic shapes does not rule out spikes of dynamic energy (“Theoretical Morning”). You will need to put the hours in to detect the particulars: headphones are strongly recommended, for every small movement counts in the music’s overall balance.
Camões, Pinheiro and Mira succeeded in relinquishing a large part of the egotistical features of their improvisational personalities, essentially voicing a collective acumen by adding elements of neatness even to the sections partially affected by a lack of proper organization. This ensures the total absence of flabby debauchery in the performance, whose level of incisiveness remains adequate throughout the disc.