Today Reverb Recommends...Taking the Pulse of Jazz With 'Endangered Blood'

(Today Reverb Recommends... is our new daily word on what to check out, in live music and elsewhere.)

Back in the late 80s and early 90s, a horde of Seattle musicians captured global attention. Their new sound was fierce, expressive, original, and had lasting influence.

No, we're not talking about Mudhoney at The Off Ramp. We're talking about a bunch of Seattle jazz kids in New York.

Transplanted Seattle players who grew up in the local high school jazz scene were leaders in creating a new Downtown sound at the Knitting Factory. It was aggressive, wide-open, and all-encompassing. Tonight is a chance to catch up with two of those much-matured players as they return home with their newest quartet, Endangered Blood.

Drummer Jim Black and woodwind player Chris Speed make up half this two-sax, bass, and drum unit, which delivers a head-rush of aggressive improvising, grounded in Black's controlled-detonation drumming. Going chordless has long been a path to freedom in jazz. And Endangered Blood is the latest band to leave guitar and piano behind in a search for wider-open spaces. This isn't tap-your-foot KPLU jazz; but these guys are thoroughly versed in jazz history, and the music of many other cultures too.

You can catch them at the Chapel Performance Space tonight. A quartet led by one of the deans of the Downtown scene, Wayne Horvitz, opens.

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