Giant Step Arts label. Recorded over two nights in early June of 2018, the eight Palmer originals are performed by the trumpeter along with tenor saxophonist Mark Turner, drummer Kendrick Scott, and bassist Matt Brewer. They have recorded together before in different settings but this is the first time all four have appeared on the same album. Kudos to Jimmy Katz for his engineering as the sound is bright and clear, the rhythm section is up front but never overwhelms the front line. This music sounds great over headphones, blasting out of speakers in the house and car, and thanks to Scott and Brewer, it's impossible to sit still on the uptempo material.
|Photo: Jimmy & Dena Katz|
"Rhyme and Reason" is an album to savor, to soak up the sounds, to revel in the exuberance of such creative music, and how timeless this music feels. So many different factors go in to the success of this music, from the long friendships of the musicians to the excellent and intelligent compositions to the exceptional sound of the recording. Jason Palmer strikes gold with this music and the listeners are the beneficiaries.
For more information, go to www.jasonpalmermusic.com.
Here's the opening track:
I mentioned above that this is the first project to be released by Giant Step Arts. Photographer/ engineer Jimmy Katz and his wife Dena head the non-profit organization and their mission states:
"Our goal is to present unique premiere live performances featuring some of modern jazz’s most innovative artists, all recorded for independent release and documented both photographically and on film. What is truly unprecedented about this endeavor is that the musicians have total control of their artistic projects. They will not only receive all the recordings and digital downloads of their musical output but will also retain complete ownership of their masters. Giant Step Arts is committed to promoting the projects and fostering the careers of their artists by providing them with promotional photo and video material and publicity."
Mr. Katz chooses all the artists: the next recordings will come from drummer Johnathan Blake in a trio setting (released in April) with bassist Linda May Han Oh and saxophonist Chris Potter. Blake will also appear on the May release by tenor saxophonist Eric Alexander, also recorded in a trio setting with bassist Doug Weiss.
For more information, go to www.giantsteparts.org.
The music on "Waves of Calm" is a smart blend of power and, yes, calm. Influenced by his father, Jim Snidero, along with an excellent ensemble, creates a program that blends the modern influence of Miles Davis with classic blues ballads. Give this music time to soak in because there are so many facets to the pieces and such excellent musicianship.
For more information, go to www.jimsnidero.com.
Here's a taste of the album:
"A Lift Above" opens with a rapid-fire, repetitive, solo from the vibes before Fortin enters with a throbbing bass line plus the melody is picked up by synth. The duo weave in and around the melody before a mysterious yet lovely close. "H Moll (Zeitweisse)" has a strong classical feel, a touch of JS Bach right before the melodic bass solo. As Fortin comes out of his solo, Davidson takes off on a delightful romp. There's also a short vibes overdub right before the close. The album immediately jumps into the lovely ballad "Out of Love" - here, the synth work colors the lovely melody provided by the vibes and underscored by the bass.
For more information, go to www.elasticrecordings.com.
Here's the delightful "Berlin I":