German saxophonist and clarinetist Peter Brotzmann, who has been active for more than four decades, is among the most important and revered figures in the history of European free jazz. He toured Texas last year in intense duo performances with Han Bennink, a Dutch contemporary whose drumming virtually defines the word "idiosyncratic." This time, Brotzmann's companions are younger and more traditional, but no less unique or exciting.
Nasheed Waits is a second-generation jazz drummer - his father was bop drummer Freddie Waits - and he has an almost instinctual way of pushing the boundaries of meter without quite breaking out of time. Revealing one of his primary influences, Max Roach, Waits plays with an emphasis on melody, even in free improvisations, and Brotzmann seems mellower with him, accordingly. Warning: in-camera sound ahead!
Bassist Eric Revis began his career in funk and rock, and these influences remain in his cleverly clunky approach to jazz. His immensely fun 2004 debut as a bandleader, Tales of the Stuttering Mime, is accessible and groove-driven, yet weirdly off-kilter and full of odd timing and asymmetrical rhythms. Samples can be heard at his Web site. Revis has also performed in Branford Marsalis's quartet since 1997.
Full biographies of all three can be found at the Nameless Sound Web site.
Brotzmann, Revis and Waits perform 8 p.m. tonight, at the TBH Theater (Talento Bilingue de Houston), 333 S. Jensen Dr. $13 general admission/ $10 students / under 18 free. Why not bring the baby?