Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Kent Miller - Contributions (Tnek Jazz, 2016)

Kent Miller is an acoustic bassist on the Washington, D.C. scene, releasing his debut album in the company of Benny Russell on tenor saxophone, Darius Scott on piano and Greg Holloway on drums and percussion. The album is solid modern hard bop played with skill and panache, with solid compositions and accomplished solo and group improvising. “West End Carnival” is a fine opening for the album leading to some upbeat and bouncy performances, and a very well designed sense of rhythm as the music develops an Afro-Caribbean vibe that is jaunty and infectious. There is a choppy sense of swing on the soulful “Miss Lillie” which locks into an excellent groove when Russell lays out and the Scott solos over the rock solid bass and drum unit. Miller is a team player, but does allow himself a solo spot on “One For Two Blues” that is taut and well articulated. “G’s Bop” is one of the highlights of the album, because it is a bright and bouncy piece of modern jazz that allows for some good solo spots, especially from the drummer Holloway who makes the best of it by soloing and supporting the band and he is in pleasing form throughout the album. This was a well-done and very solid album of modern mainstream jazz. Miller and the group represent themselves very well throughout, making an admirable statement. Hopefully we will hear more from them in the future. Contributions - CDBaby