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Talk about not giving an inch. Pianist Paul Bley, drummer Paul Motian, and bassist Gary Peacock are as tough-minded about free jazz improvisation as they were nearly 40 years ago when they first started to play together. Each has gone his separate way at times and played all manner of music over the years, but occasional reunions find them investigating uncompromising terrain. In their case though, uncompromising doesn't mean devoid of swing and beauty. Bley, Motian, and Peacock are detail guys --they think as much in terms of tonal quality and melodic space -- as in, what not to play -- as they do in terms of ensemble interaction. If this sounds like heady stuff, it can be. But on the lyrical ballads "Noosphere," "Dialogue Amour," and "Don't You Know" the atmosphere takes on a poetic, even romantic quality. And on "Fig Foot," with the threesome cutting loose on a swinging groove, the rhythmic friction turns positively joyous. Long may these three reunite -- jazz can always use their nerve.