Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Jim Snidero Stream of Consciousness Savant 2013

 The jazz answer to Zen and the Art Of Motorcycle Maintenance finds Jim Snidero swinging hard with some of the best young players on the scene today. Linda Oh is the hot ticket on bass and with Rudy Royston on drums they  round out one of the tightest rhythm sections along with  A list sideman guitarist Paul Bollenback, the swing here is as righteous as it gets. Hard but never in your face. Deceptively subtle and delightfully engaging.

Zen and the Art Of Motorcycle Maintenance is a 1974 novel and while this work was not exactly about Zen and little if anything to do with motorcycles, the subject matter concerned the metaphysics of quality but there are some parallels. Snidero was specifically looking for some more up "in the moment" talent to really open up and go a little deeper. More innate less and a far less self indulgent odd time signature commitment allows for a harmonic progression that is...well, Zen. Quality unlike taste is not subjective and keeping the idea is mind that swing is something you feel more so then a rhythm you simply learn Snidero is lyrically in that jazz sweet spot that old school players seem to really dig. Here Snidero keeps things tight, no notes are wasted but the feeling of forward motion and the somewhat eclectic pace of the release allow the compositions to take on a life of their own.

"Stream of Consciousness" is a carefully laid out syncopated vamp that has Snideo exploring the entire range of the alto while the subtle nuances of bassist Oh and drummer Royston are perfectly placed to pursue the lyrical chase in progress. "Nirvana" has the addition of guitarist Bollenback on acoustic to vary the musical shades of gray. The edge of a harmonic dream of exploration and fantasy continues. "Wisdoms Path" continues the thoughtful if not thought provoking harmonic movement. The atmosphere of old school becoming new cool seems to permeate this stellar gem and the contributions from Bollenback, Oh and Royston all spot on. This is jazz deconstructed and moved forward to another dimension of spatial reality.
In short...I dig it.

Tracks: Stream of Consciousness; Nirvana; Fear One; Vantage; Black Ice; Wisdom's Path; K-Town.

Personnel: Jim Snidero: alto saxophone; Paul Bollenback: guitar; Linda Oh: bass; Rudy Royston: drums.