Fasten your seatbelts, the ProjeKct is about to take flight
The second night of P1 is notable for the ways in which the musicians can stay locked in, grooves aflight, for longer and longer stretches of time; overall a much tighter night than the first and a rousing next step for the ProjeKct. The dark opening of 2 i 1 clearly shows the band on firmer footing; its seven and a half minutes of probing, while still rather open, reveal greater confidence and clarity. And it doesn't take long for the band to lock in to more aggressive territory - 2 i 2 flat out scorches - strings and rhythms aggressive but controlled with some marvelous distorted soloing, realizing the unfulfilled potential of the '97 Nashville Rehearsals. Though P2 was technically the first ProjeKct into action, its initial efforts (captured on the Space Groove album) felt like a signal from another world. P1 is spiritually the direct successor to the Nashville Rehearsals, both in the riffage and in the rhythmic territory. 2 ii 1 has them beginning the second set by taking another swing at Presidents (aka the riffs that would grow into The ConstruKction Of Light), though only the opening bears that similarity at this point - Bruford always threw a radically different groove onto it, so the elaborations and developments are very different than what would grow into the official song. Still, it's rather more productive than how it began at Nashville, which felt like an idea being pulled in multiple rhythmic directions. Aligned more purely with Bruford's danceable inclination, it fully takes flight toward that end, and ranks as one of the most successful portions of the evening. The second set closer is also furiously exciting - a driving improv that keeps its intensity and focus for all of its 11 minutes. The rate at which ProjeKct One is developing focus and clarity is inspiring, growing by leaps with each successive set, and the second night at the Jazz Cafe captures the four of them growing into a formidable beast of their own.