A harmonic butterfly, catch him if you can!
Brent Black / www.criticaljazz.com
The synergy of a band embracing a lyrical sense of purpose with the syncopated pop of melodic nuances just to keep it interesting. Sorry...Didn't mean to go Cee Lo on you but it is what it is. A jazz collective, QuintEssential The Calling Volume Three. I have been writing about what I feel is the new sound for those walking on the straight ahead side of the improvisational street. To sum it up: Make old school flip new cool. Some artists are doing it well and just for the sake of argument we can place Terrence Brewer into this very selective club.
Tradition and a stagnant mindset have done more to hold musicians and improvisational music back then attempting to point the finger at an industry that is ... functionally broke. QuintEssential would seem to be the perfect example of the Terrence Brewer wheelhouse. Something old, something new, some borrowed, something blue...The recipe for a successful straight ahead date but don't tell anyone. The amazing aspect of this release is that the formula previously mentioned is executed with precision with all original tunes. Now...toss in the fact this is a live studio release and one begins to appreciate the harmonic six string chameleon that is Terrence Brewer as not only are notes bent but genre, style and what might be otherwise more traditional expectations.
Brewer is as fearless in his approach as he is proficient in his execution with tunes such as "Blues For Katie" and "5'O'Clock." The band here is top drawer with the end result as a shifting lyrical conversation that is built on dynamics and mutual respect. No covers combined with an open ended warm sound and production quality elevate would might be an ordinary release for some players into a release of note for others. I champion the Independent artists. As I listened the overwhelming feeling I was left with was "when" and not "if" a major label comes calling. In the world of improvisational music it is a dog eat dog world. If you can not run with the big dogs they stay on the porch. Catch Terrence Brewer if you can!
Tracks: Delightedly Mopey; Blues For Katie; Kismet; Easy Way Out; A-Muse Me; In Search Of Mr. Mofongo; Hymn of the Humble; Study In Blue; 5 O'clock
Personnel: Terrence Brewer: Guitar; Kasey Knudsen: Saxophones; Ben Stolorow: Piano / Rhodes; Ravi Abcarian: Acoustic Bass; Micah McClain: Drums