LOGICFEST | 15th ANNIV | KNITTING THROW DOWN

I don't even know where to begin with this one, my mind is still recovering from the pure bliss of the event. DJ Logic conspired in 4 different all-improv trios in his early show at the Knitting Factory last night as follows:

The first mini-set had Logic up front with Christian McBride laying down the funky double bass lines and a drummer from Detroit (didn't catch his name). Real tight funk until a fourth guest, Scratch, the human beat box from The Roots, came out on and went head to head with DJ Logic with some sick beats.

Just after the permanent grin appeared on my face from the first excellent grouping, out comes Charlie Hunter and Billy Martin for round 2. At this point I was ecstatic, Billy Martin can feel a groove like few others, and I am always blown away by Charlie Hunter's magical mastery of his bass/guitar instrument. They connected with Logic on some sweet evil jazz that got spacey at times. Charlie Hunter teased the MMW tune "Bubblehouse," which the crowd seemed to dig. Towards the end, Martin and Hunter had a tambourine jam with Logic scratching some sick lead.

As if it couldn't get any better, the DJ grinned and welcomed out John Medeski, the mad scientist on keys, and Mike Gordon on bass. Ahh yes... Logic set up a beat as they walked out on stage and Mike played some sliding bass licks to open up the jam. The improv trance was set immediately when Medeski went to work. The styles of each member in this trio were perfect complements for an incredible throw down of progressive jazz. Medeski's wandering, atonal mischief on keys was supported wonderfully by DJ Logic's meaty beats and spaced out scratching, while Mike Gordon impressed me with an experimental fusion jazz side that I had yet to hear.

The last pairing was Rob Wasserman on the double bass and Michael Kang of String Cheese on the fiddle and mandolin (of course with Logic still front and center). Very interesting and creative space jams followed, but I was slightly disappointed with Kang's play. Wasserman and Logic really shined here, bringing an incredible two hour ride to a conclusion.

The only way I can describe seeing something of this rarity and incredible caliber is by calling it LOGICFEST - simply sick. The early show was followed up by Project Logic playing late night and funking hard with special guest Mary Klear and a setlist including "Bubblehouse," "Cars Trucks Buses," and some Herbie Hancock Headhunters action just to break the ice... but more on that some other time.

David Weinglass
JamBase | NYC
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[Published on: 2/8/02]

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