Within â€śWildernessâ€ť â€“ Montreal-via-Toronto double bassist Aaron Lumley’s second solo release on his own Tone Wood imprint â€“ there is an abundance of metaphor for the act of striking out on a summertime adventure within a lush forested landscape. Â The artist himself has confirmed this with his own words regarding the album: â€śThere is a way of walking in the woods, not along trails, but by following the natural openings in the underbrush. Leaving the path, a wanderer enters into slow, sometimes difficult negotiations with the forest.â€ť The diversity of sonic terrain mapped within these eight improvisations echoes such a statement. Lumley has entwined himself with his instrument, achieving a sort of symbiosis that allows him to extract sounds both delicate and jarring.Â Once he’s caught sight of a suitable path through the brush, only his body and his bass know the outcome.
â€śWildernessâ€ť captures Lumley in the guise of a forager, searching for new methods to escape the limitations of technique, the human body, and the physical science of acoustics. By accomplishing this without straying beyond the boundaries of man and implement, he’s shown mastery of a vigorous beast, a task not for the faint of heart. Furthermore, the album is as appetizing for casual listeners as it is for serious improv mavens â€“ a gravity-defying feat that is as rare as it is welcome!