Anat Fort calls the longest piece here Not the Perfect Storm. She could have left off the “not” because, beginning with Roland Schneider’s ominous tom-tom rolls, it is a perfect marriage of visceral drama and a profound, almost ancient-sounding sadness. While Fort’s piano, Schneider’s drums and Gary Wang’s bass create the ebbing and flowing tension, the trio’s guest, Gianluigi Trovesi, layers in desolate, wind-swept lines on alto clarinet that further intensify this remarkable piece.
Most of Fort’s work is tinged with sadness. But then that has always been the shortest path to the most beautiful music, and Fort has an inbuilt flair for a gorgeous melody alongside her willingness to experiment with form and to embrace the most open improvisation. Trovesi is an inspired choice of collaborator, his keening clarinet sharpening the edge of her music at every appearance. The album contains solo piano and a duet with Trovesi as well as supple trios and quartets, with Fort’s own playing maintaining a nuanced dialogue between occasional density and an aching minimalism.