Thursday, January 20, 2011

Kermit Driscoll – Reveille

Bassist Kermit Driscoll has played in the band of the idiosyncratic guitarist Bill Frisell on many occasions, so it’s nice to hear them with him in the leadership position. Also joining them are the up and coming pianist Kris Davis and Vinnie Colaiuta on drums. The music still retains the heartland vibe of a Frisell record, but the music is focused and song based, and with Davis adding enigmatic piano accents and thick bass leaving open space for the group to get a very interesting and fluid sound. “Chicken Reel” takes the Americana groove that has become the foundation of Frisell’s material and uses that for the foundation of a fun improvisation. While most of the compositions are originals, the inclusion of the rarely covered Miles Davis piece “Great Expectations” from the early 1970’s gives the band a chance to stretch on music with elements of funk and fusion. The music works very well, and although Frisell is the dominant soloist, one should not make the mistake that this is his record under another name. Driscoll’s compositions are well drawn vignettes that challenge the band to make unique and always interesting music, they cover a lot of ground from the folksy to the funky and should make the album appealing to a wide variety of music fans from both the jam-band and hard-core jazz camps. Reveille -

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