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David Binney: Graylen Epicenter (2011)

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David Binney: Graylen Epicenter Track review of "Graylen Epicenter"

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Alto saxophonist and producer David Binney has become a ubiquitous presence in jazz in the last 20 years fronting his own bands while appearing with Donny McCaslin
Donny McCaslin
Donny McCaslin
b.1966
saxophone
, Uri Caine
Uri Caine
Uri Caine
b.1956
piano
, Joel Harrison
Joel Harrison
Joel Harrison
b.1957
guitar, electric
, Edward Simon
Edward Simon
Edward Simon
b.1969
piano
and Bobby Previte
Bobby Previte
Bobby Previte
b.1957
drums
. He might be considered the logical next step in jazz saxophone after Wayne Shorter
Wayne Shorter
Wayne Shorter
b.1933
saxophone
and Michael Brecker
Michael Brecker
Michael Brecker
1949 - 2007
sax, tenor
(Sonny Rollins
Sonny Rollins
Sonny Rollins
b.1930
saxophone
remains in an orbit by himself), never mind that he is not a tenorist. Binney has been sharpening his direction over his last two recordings ( Aliso (Criss-Cross, 2010) and Third Occasion (Mythology Records, 2009)) on his way to Graylen Epicenter which achieves a certain anxious stateliness that is quite cutting edge.

The title track, "Graylen Epicenter," is the lengthiest piece on the one- hour-plus recording. It possesses many moods and movements, the most provocative being Wayne Krantz
Wayne Krantz
Wayne Krantz
b.1956
guitar
's funky R&B guitar solo early on in the piece. The introduction is a modal march over which Binney, tenor saxophonist Chris Potter
Chris Potter
Chris Potter
b.1971
reeds
and trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire
Ambrose Akinmusire
Ambrose Akinmusire
b.1982
trumpet
spin their discursive silk. Krantz spins, slaps and snaps his way through James Brown
James Brown
James Brown
1933 - 2006
vocalist
by way of Jaco Pastorius
Jaco Pastorius
Jaco Pastorius
1951 - 1987
bass, electric
, sounding at once like an electric bass and an electric guitar. His playing is very melodic and soulful. A head break incorporates the vocalization of uber-siren Gretchen Parlato
Gretchen Parlato
Gretchen Parlato

vocalist
and Binney seconding the horns. Binney takes a long solo with a noisy rhythm section, making what has become his brand of jazz: assertive, overt, confident. All of these are reasons why Binney is at the center of jazz.

Personnel: David Binney: alto and soprano saxophones, vocal; Gretchen Parlato: vocal; Ambrose Akinmusire: trumpet; Chris Potter: tenor saxophone; Craig Taborn: piano; Wayne Krantz: guitar; Eivind Opsvik: bass; Brian Blade: drums; Kenny Wollesen: percussion, vibes; Rogerio Boccato: percussion.

Record Label: Mythology Records

Style: Modern Jazz


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