"Yes, and..." is inspired by the improvisational techniques created by Chicago's Compass Players in the mid-1950s whose comedy skits inspired the work of Second City and other experimental troupes. Geof Bradfield also cites his studies of French composer Olivier Messiaen's variety of ideas about rhythm, melody, and harmony on his preparation of this material. Over the course of the saxophonist's career, he's paid tribute to Melba Liston, to Leadbelly, to bebop and mainstream jazz, and the inspiration of African rhythms. One can see that this new album is a continuation of all of his studies, his maturity as a composer and arranger, and his desire to continue searching. We who listen closely reap the rewards of his adventurous musical mind.
For more information, go to geofbradfield.com.
Here's a different edition of the nonet playing Herbie Hancock's "The Prisoner" (from late March 2017 - it will give you a good idea of the ensemble's sound and Bradfield's arranging talent):
|Photo: Bryan Murray|
There are really no weak tracks on "Wheelhouse." The program closes with the aptly-titled "The Crusher" and "Gas Station Hot Dog" (the two tracks that surround "One for Jonny"). On the former, the quintet explodes from note one on a journey that roils and rollicks thanks to the propulsive drum work and the exciting bass figures. Davis absolutely rocks (he always plays as if he is having the "best time ever"), Lawrence's trumpet dances with glee (goosed on by the rhythm section), and Tallitsch flat-out swings! On the album's final tune, one hears a funky beat and melody reminiscent of Herbie Hancock's "Watermelon Man" - the listener may not be able to contain a laugh or two as the quintet hits the groove, as the soloists ride the "boogaloo", and the cares of the day wash away.
Need a sonic break from the endless waves of negativity that seem to batter one from all sides. Dig in to "Wheelhouse", enjoy what Tom Tallitsch and his creative companions have created, and have a good time.
For more information, go to www.tomtallitsch.com/about/.
Here's the title track: