Sean Conly / Alex Harding / Darius Jones / Chad Taylor: Grass Roots (2012)

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Sean Conly / Alex Harding / Darius Jones / Chad Taylor: Grass Roots
From the start of the track "Hotttness" the organized chaos is at first unsettling, yet gives way to a tight hook in the exceptional debut Grass Roots by a newly formed collective who sound like they've been playing together for decades. The two lead voices consist of alto saxophonist wunderkind Darius Jones
Darius Jones
Darius Jones

sax, alto
( Man'ish Boy (A Raw & Beautiful Thing) (Aum Fidelity, 2009) and his equally gifted reed partner-in-crime, Alex Harding who masters the unforgiving baritone saxophone. But equally formidable is the smoldering rhythm section of drummer Chad Taylor
Chad Taylor
Chad Taylor

drums
and bassist Sean Conly that supplies enough heat and inspiration of their own to counter their fiery cohorts.

The seven tracks take no prisoners whether distributing hard bopping swing in "Flight AZ 1734" or relentless freedom in "Ricochet" in the modes of John Coltrane
John Coltrane
John Coltrane
1926 - 1967
saxophone
and Albert Ayler
Albert Ayler
Albert Ayler
1936 - 1970
sax, tenor
. Yet it's the harmonious and creamy center inside Taylor's "Whatiss" that keeps Jones's atonal intro more palatable as the band methodically negotiates, shapes, and churns the funky melody. Conly's "Schnibbett" is another highlight—at nearly twelve minutes, its docile cadence is unhurried, but like a feral animal, equally threatening, as each musician intuitively collaborate and provide vibrant solos. Grass Roots is a searing introduction from a intrepid collective that is hopefully not a one-off.

Track Listing: Hotttness; Lovelorn; Ricochet; Schnibbett; Flight AZ 1734; Whatiss; Hovering Above. .

Personnel: Sean Conly: bass; Alex Harding: baritone saxophone; Darius Jones: alto saxophone; Chad Taylor: drums.

Record Label: AUM Fidelity


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