Sunday, September 20, 2020

Nubya Garcia - Source (Concord Jazz, 2020)

Another excellent musician from the seemingly limitless pool of young London jazz musicians, saxophonist Nubya Garcia mixes elements of dub and reggae to her music to create an interesting and personal music that works quite well. She is accompanied by the core band of Joe Armon Jones on keyboards, Daniel Casimir on bass and Sam Jones on drums along with some special guests on an album that begin with "Pace" which has crisp drumming and dreamy sounding piano and saxophone, creating an evocative soundscape. Thick and insistent bass and drums underpin and encourage the music and the band comes together as a whole with a fine all-encompassing sound. The music drifts to a space for thick bass and saxophone to ride the thermals floating above, before re-engaging with the band in a dynamic resonance. Fast drumming and saxophone are locked in tightly, opening up to a piano, bass and drums section that weaves rippling textures, picking up speed to a rippling fast pace and saxophone re-entry that brings everyone back together for a fine conclusion. "The Message Continues" uses drums and electric piano to provide a nice groove for the saxophone to enter into, creating a solid mid-tempo foundation for the band. Garcia is patient, letting her solo grow organically and presenting thoughtful tone and pacing throughout her extended solo section. There is a pleasant area for electronic keyboard, bass and drums, playing fast and nimble, followed by Garcia coming back to slow things down a touch, giving the music a little more room to breathe. "Inner Game" has tight bass and drums with electronic keyboards setting a good foundation for the leader whose saxophone builds  in gradually, creating a performance that develops into something that embraces rhythm with complex drumming and saxophone playing. Garcia plays with vigor, pushing her instrument over the driving percussion and meeting the vigorous rhythm section, creating a strong collective improvisation, and adding longer punctuating tones and the music climaxes in volume and intensity. There is a very intricate and fast electric piano, bass and drums section when Garcia lays out, with all of the remaining musicians pushing their limits, and creating a fascinating mesh of musical ideas. Garcia returns amid cascades of electronics and percussion to rally the troops for a final push to the conclusion of a dynamic and well executed performance. This album worked quite well, and Garcia presents a wide ranging program of music with her well executed saxophone playing at the center. The music is accessible and will hopefully receive attention from a wide range of mainstream jazz fans. Source -

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