|Photo: Erain Ribeiro|
Reed and Marcus blend their voices (the bassist playing arco most of the way) on "How Deep Is The Ocean (intro)" before drummer Eric Kennedy enters to push the song forward. Again, the bass counterpoint stands out throughout the track. The clarinetist, Peterson, and the two bassists dance their way through a short but powerful take on Bennie Maupin's "Neophilia." The piece really builds off the "bounce" that Reed and Saleem supply as well as Peterson's majestic drum work.
"Trio+" closes with "Plummeting", an original piece that Marcus first recorded on his 2005 debut for Hipnotic Records "In Pursuit of the Ninth Man" – that album featured Marcus's Jazz Orchestra while here it's played as a quartet with Jones as the other voice. The power of the playing hearkens right back to the opening track with Ralph Peterson leading the way with his energetic and joyous playing.
The more one listens to "Trio+", the more one wants to see this band in person. They possess the power to pick the listener right out of his/her seat as well as make them lean in to really "hear" the softer pieces. Todd Marcus continues to tell important stories in his music, this time making musical testaments on the importance of working together as a unit while still maintaining one's unique voice. Dig in and play it loud!!
For more information, go to toddmarcusjazz.com.
Here's "Cantata" featuring bassist Reed and drummer Kennedy plus the leader on B-flat clarinet:
The best way to listen to "West 60th" is to start at the beginning and go right through to the melodious "Epilogue". The music, at times exciting, always melodic, contemplative, and filled with intelligent musicianship, demands and deserves your attention. Others have compared Greg Reitan and his music to that of Bill Evans and Keith Jarrett; there are hints on several tracks but what one always hears on this album is creative songs, excellent arrangements, intelligent interactions, and a trio that loves to play together. Works for this listener.
For more information, go to www.gregreitan.com.
Here's the opening track: