The Bad Plus: Everybody Wants to Rule the World

The Bad Plus performed the Tears For Fears classic Everybody Wants to Rule The World on their 2007 release Prog. This concert footage is from The Basement night club in Sydney Australia in 2008. It's incredibly good. Here's why:

The Bad Plus is a jazz trio that isn't afraid of negative space in their interpretation. Dave King on drums doesn't feel the need to merely pound away at the pocket and Ethan Iverson on piano is not afraid of simple harmonies an open voicings. This approach makes subtly more effective and dynamic shaping more emotionally evocative. I love how Dave King paints with his drum kit. His playing is a narrative as he interacts with the other two musicians.

Secondly, the group brings the piece to a controlled boil starting a 2:59 during Reid Anderson's bass solo and when the swell is at its breaking point at 4:29 they pull back and imediately return to the stoic emotional place where they began. They pull this gesture off so well that it is the only time the audience breaks the frame of silence. 

Which brings me to my final thought – the audience etiquette during this performance is neither rock and roll nor jazz. The crowd is completely reverent, at a night club – I love this. This is a trademark of a Bad Plus concert. They shape their interpretations so convincingly that their is no moment which is not completely engaging. Soft, loud, whatever – when The Bad Plus performs they occupy ever inch of the room. You dig?

Don't miss more TWD articles about The Bad Plus heretheir TwitterFacebook, and Ethan Iverson's blog Do The Math