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In April of 2013, the Verve Jazz Ensemble released their first album It's About Time (CD Baby, 2012) to rave reviews from critics and jazz lovers everywhere. Exactly one year later, the group follows up on their amazing debut by unveiling East End Sojourn, an exciting second effort featuring new creative arrangements, more reimagined standards, a couple of original statements and the inclusion of guitarist luminary Peter Bernstein
. Guitarist Bernstein appears on three consecutive tracks with the first being, "You And The Night And The Music," followed by the Guy Wood standard "My One And Only Love," the only balladic piece of the set.
Venturing into Latin jazz for the very first time, the group delivers a spirited rendition of Brazilian singer Djavan's "Flor de Lis" led by the guitarist and drummer Josh Feldstein
's light samba beats making this taste of Brazil quite engaging. Feldstein's up beat swinging "East End Avenue" is the first of the two originals with the trumpeter's muted horn- heavy "Dilly Dally Doodle," serving as the finale but, not before showcasing some of Elias Bailey
classic featuring light cymbal accents from the drummer, more from Einerson and the horn section. What happens when you merge elements of the Horace Silver standard "Strollin'" with Neil Hefti's "Cute"? The answer of course? A wonderful sampling of two classics on the appropriately titled "Strollin'" Meets Cute," highlighting excellent bass phrasings from Chris DeAngelis
in support of the two leadersand arrangers of the hybrid piecedrummer Feldstein and pianist Oestreicher.
Keeping faith with the traditional and contemporary side of jazz, East End Sojourn delivers a fair share of hard-driving swing and bop which, is something the dynamic Verve Jazz Ensemble has become accustomed to doing so well.
Track Listing: Sister Sadie; Jitterbug Waltz; You And The Night And The Music; My One And Only Love; Flor De Lis; East End Avenue; Corner Pocket; Strollin' Meets Cute; Dill Dally Doodle.
Personnel: Jon Blanck: tenor saxophone; Peter Bernstein: guitar (3-5); Tatum Greenblatt: trumpet; Matt Oestreicher: piano; Elias Bailey: bass; Josh Feldstein: drums; Chris Deangelis: bass (1, 6, 8); Steve Einerson: piano (2, 7, 9).