Monday, February 27, 2012

Brian Patneaude - All Around Us (WEPA Records, 2012)

Brian Patneaude is a saxophonist and composer from upstate New York. Originally influenced by Michael Brecker, he has evolved to build his own lyrical, flowing style of playing and writing. He has developed a network of musicians and fans over the years and was able to make use of this group of supporters by developing this project through the DIY funding website Kickstarter. He is accompanied on this album by David Caldwell-Mason on acoustic and electric piano, Mike DelPrete on bass, Danny Whelchel on drums. The album is filled with melodic, accessible mainstream jazz, typified by the two opening performances, "Lake Timeless" and "Too Vast for Malice." The band's traits are immediately heard - a laser focus on the music at hand a keen listening ability that allows them to shift tempo and focus at will. I was very excited to hear the title track of my favorite Wayne Shorter album, "Juju," on the album. The group takes full advantage of the freedom and complexity of Shorter's composition. Using some nice and subtle electric piano the band is able to tap into the enigmatic nature that makes Shorter's compositions so compelling. The original composition "Aimless Antithesis" builds an aggressive opening statement into a woven texture reminiscent of bassist and composer Ben Allison's multi-faceted work. The percussive vamping piano, and locked in bass and drums create an excellent foundation for creative and patient saxophone soloing, as well as a fine spotlight for Caldwell-Mason. This was a really well done album of modern mainstream jazz. The musicians were tightly focused and made the most of their time in the studio, producing a finely crafted music that develops and molds it's space and time to develop a coherent and well paced set of very enjoyable music. All Around Us -

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