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Best Album of 2002    Playwrite   David Mamet’s works inspire the music here — hence the presence of tunes called “American Buffalo” and “Oleanna.” But Fields’ precise motivation is less important than the work itself. With bassist Michael Formanek and drummer Michael Zerang, this gifted guitarist constructs open-ended, freeform soundscapes filled with noises that are alternatively weird, discomfiting, and stimulating. — Michael Roberts,   Jazziz



Fields wrote all of the   compositions on this stimulating CD and plays them on guitar with pianist Marilyn Crispell, bassist Hans Sturm, and percussionist Hamid Drake. Despite often performing quietly, they take plenty of risks. Fields employs harmonic and rhythmic/metric concepts derived from composer Stephen Dembski, which he’s modified for use in an improvising context. Often his group’s playing, though not conventionally melodic, is lyrical. Much of the disc features thoughtful, pointillistic collective improvisation. Crispell’s the most aggressive player here and performs impressively. Her work ranges from pensive to jarringly percussive, but is always well thought out, inventive, and clearly articulated. Fields plays economically, concentrating on adding color to the ensemble. Sturm and Drake make valuable contributions, listening closely to what’s going on and responding with intelligence and creativity. — Harvey Pekar,   Jazziz

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