Thursday, January 27, 2011

Mostly Other People Do the Killing - The Coimbra Concert (Clean Feed, 2011)

One of the most exciting and innovative bands on the modern jazz scene, Mostly Other People Do the Killing is a jazz ensemble consisting of Peter Evans on trumpet, Jon Irabagon on tenor and sopranino saxophones, Moppa Elliott on bass and Kevin Shea on drums. What makes the band so much fun to follow is the impish delight they take in making music, from the delightful spoof covers to wryly quoting famous jazz songs amidst their original compositions. But make no mistake, their music is taken seriously and played with a very high degree of competence. This double live album was recorded live in Portugal and marks their first appearance on a label other than Hot Cup. Filled with fun, infectious and utterly enjoyable music. They play Ornette-ish free bop with sly quotes of other music, like sneaking in "Night in Tunisia" amidst the massive 30+ "Blue Ball" which anchors the first disc and evolves like a suite with a wonderful sense of timing and balance. "Pen Argyl" features smoking hot collective improvisation with fire to burn. "Burning Well" showcases Evans on a scorching strong trumpet solo, building up a riotous energy between the instruments, with epic drumming and bass pulse prod the horns on to ever greater heights. Wonderful, almost telepathic interplay amongst the band members is a key component of the music. "Factoryville" built around a thick and dexterous bass solo. The trumpet and tenor saxophone intertwine nicely over funky backbeat, getting a feel akin to classic Jazz Messengers albums. There's a quieter interlude midway through for light trumpet, bass and bells. The music slowly picks up speed and intensity with a growing saxophone solo. "St. Mary’s" has strong up-tempo full band interplay, followed by a playful spacey droning interlude and light soft horn interplay, intricate and deep. Picks the pace back up slowly in a dynamic fashion. "Elliott Mills" wraps up this wonderful album with a fast paced funky fun coda. The Coimbra Concert - Clean Feed

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