Noah Preminger, Meditations On Freedom (Dry Bridge Records)
Tenor saxophonist and composer Preminger timed the release of this album for the day of Donald Trump’s inauguration as president of The United States. In the months since, it has attracted considerable attention as a protest statement. Preminger’s covers of classic songs from the Civil Rights era by Bob Dylan, Sam Cooke and others achieve his goal, as do new Preminger pieces with titles llike “We Have A Dream” and “The 99 Percent.” The album is a dramatic political and cultural document. Of equal importance: Preminger, trumpeter Jason Palmer, bassist Kim Cass and drummer Ian Froman make it a musical success. Preminger and Palmer solo over the spare accompaniment with passion that intensifies in moments of mutual improvisation. The instrumentation may raise thoughts of Mulligan, Giuffre and a simple past, but the music’s thoroughly 21st Century zeitgeist is rooted in our edgy times.