A transplanted Chicogan now based in New York City guitarist and composer Jon Lundbom is joined on this album by Jon Irabagon on alto saxophone, Byran Murray on tenor saxophone, Moppa Elliott on bass and Danny Fischer on drums. They play big brawny modern jazz, and much like the music of Charles Mingus, the music sounds bigger than the quintet format would indicate. "Truncheon" opens the disc with a very fast paced and exciting melody moving into a dark toned saxophone solo. "Phonetics" moves at a slower pace with an almost bluesy feel with high pitched saxophone backed by rumbling bass and a spare, dusky guitar solo. "The Christian Life" has a mid-tempo country or gospel feel to it. Loping bass and slightly overblown saxophone builds to a supple and dexterous solo. "Tick-Dog" has probing solo guitar, with fractal bass and drums joining in an fragmented saxophones join in making for interesting collective improvisation, before Murray's tenor breaks free for a nicely paced solo. "Baluba, Baluba" wraps things up with funky drumming and stinging guitar over riffing horns. This was creative and arousing music that was played in an exciting manner. Hot Cup is turning into one of the most consistently interesting labels in today's jazz with albums from Mostly Other People Do the Killing, Charles Evans and now this exciting disc.
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Luther Thomas - In Denmark (ILK, 2014) *****
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