Jazz drummer Brooke Sofferman's latest release "The Green Between," is a strong follow up to his debut "Modesty's Odyssey," with the same core musicians,
featuring Tenor Sax veteran Jerry Bergonzi. The ensemble work here is powerful and adventuresome with each player pushing the music forward and all carrying their own weight, leaving no weak spots.
The title track leads off with guitarist Norm Zocher's urgent chords setting a frantic pace. Once a strong melody structure has been laid down, Bergnozi wastes
none of the opening energy blowing hard right out of the gate. Zocher follows with fluid fretwork that spirals into Sofferman's break neck drum solo. By the time calm, and melody, have been restored it becomes apparent that these gents can swing and ring it,
setting high expectations for what's to follow.
What follows is diversity. In a fit of programming genius, the trio piece "Mt. Desert Isle" is next. Thomson Kneeland's ominous bass lines dissolve into fluidity allowing the articulate piano work of Jacques Chanier to seize the lead. Sofferman's brushes dance
a lyrical counterpoint to the solid bass structure creating a memorable foray into the intimate trio communication.
Other highlights include the reggae meets swing of "Across the Crebix" and Abby Aronson's ethereal scatting on "Zoe Moon." Throughout, Trumpeter Phil Grenadier serves as the horn's solid backbone. He steps up to trade off with Bergonzi on "Phlegm and Yawn" and shows formidable chops when the opportunity arises. "Barefoot" closes out the set in a somewhat more subdued and intricate manner than the title track
started things, yet still displays Sofferman and his group's ability to explore varying harmonic and rhythmic interaction without losing hold of the groove. This is a choice set of ensemble Jazz that, while it might take repeated listening to fully appreciate, is well worth seeking out.
Summit Records, Inc.
Tempe, AZ 85285
Simply click on the CD cover at left to order this CD NOW!
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