4 stars ****
Triad is the fifth of twelve monthly albums to be released as part of pianist-composer Satoko Fujii’s extended celebration of her sixtieth birthday. It is also her second album with the legendary American bassist Joe Fonda
Joe Fonda. Duet (Long Song Records, 2016), recorded live in Portland, Maine in 2015, had brought the pair together at Fonda’s request though the two were barely familiar with each other’s music. Despite the album title, one of the two tracks included Fujii’s trumpeter husband Natsuki Tamura who did not receive upfront billing. On Triad, the cover credits precisely reflect the presence of Italian saxophonist Gianni Mimmo whose music, coincidentally, was also unfamiliar to both Fujii and Fonda.
Mimmo is not well-known outside Europe though he has toured extensively on that continent and in the US. He favors the soprano sax and has developed a reputation for his experimental work with extended techniques. He has been performing with one the UK’s leading improvisational guitarists, John Russell, for ten years, and fellow Italian pianist/experimentalist Gianni Lenoci and German reed player Peter Brötzmann. Mimmo has recorded on two dozen albums as a leader or co-leader.