Tuesday, July 12, 2011

David Weiss - Snuck Out (Sunnyside, 2011)

Trumpeter David Weiss and his band Point of Departure (named after a famous Andrew Hill album) look to the inside/outside music of the mid to late 1960’s as an inspiration and bring that aesthetic into the present with the second in a series of live albums. Recorded at the Jazz Standard in New York City, Weiss’ group features JD Allen on tenor saxophone, Nir Felder on guitar, Matt Clohesy on bass and Jamire Williams on drums. This album features five lengthy performances that allow plenty of soloing opportunities for members of the group, sometimes sounding like a relay race of solo statements. “Revillot” has a fast hard bop head, with Allen’s saxophone interacting with powerful drumming to build energy. Weiss enters with a punching and weaving solo, supported by dark tones of guitar accompaniment underneath. They build to a fast and potent climax with prodding from Williams, before the full band returns to take things out. Most of the music is played as an uninterrupted medley, so the group moves directly into “Gravity Point” where Felder’s nimble guitar weaves fast and strong. Weiss builds his trumpet solo architecturally, stronger and faster as the accompaniment increases. Tenor saxophone builds in, deep and dark, drawing energy from insistently strong drumming. Wayne Shorter’s “Paraphernalia” was a mainstay of Miles Davis’ repertoire for a long time in the late 60’s and it is the centerpiece of this album as the band embarks on a twenty minute exploration of the mysterious tune. Guitar builds in with an edgy feel, before trumpet and sax weave and joust overhead. Punchy trumpet and sly guitar probe while Allen brings his solo statement to a rolling boil. Felder gets an unaccompanied feature building up to the bands re-entry and conclusion. “Hidden Meanings” dials the tempo back to a medium level, with patient saxophone and guitar working well together, before building up to a dexterous series of solos. “Snuck In” wraps things up with a punchy melody played fast and strong, and then everybody gets a chance to blow and finish strong. This was a well done an exploratory recording where the group pushes the limits of the hard-bop idiom, working very well as an ensemble and allowing each member of the group to demonstrate their skills in solo statements. Snuck Out - amazon.com

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