Prominent USA West Coast jazz artists, saxophonist Rich Halley and cornetist Bobby Bradford
, disseminate a restless spirit, boosted by memorable compositions and compelling improvisational jaunts on this 2010 set. Bradford is a living legend via his affiliations with Ornette Coleman
and long-running partnership with pioneering clarinetist John Carter
. As anticipated, this band does not disappoint. Sparked by commodious passages, surging exchanges and invigorating free-bop sprees, Live at the Penofin Jazz Festival
offers the complete package.
Halley leads a changeable game plan, with the musicians varying the pitch, altering tempos, and morphing grooves into semi-structured choruses. A major highlight is the fifteen-minute "Grey Stones/Shards of Sky," where the quartet executes a torrent of passionate exchanges to form a hugely entertaining panorama.
Bradford's concise lines initiate impressions of an avant-garde military parade atop drummer Carson Hailey
's precision-oriented snare fills. The frontline also tosses in melodic intervals, laced with a few classical type segments, while Hailey's inventive solo offers an extension of the principal pulse and generates a new perspective to a suite-like composition.
Vibrant and loaded with unanticipated surprises, Halley's broad jazz vernacular and enviable chops help consummate a diverse program that yields several knockout blows.
Personnel: Rich Halley: tenor saxophone; Bobby Bradford: cornet; Clyde Reed: bass; Carson Halley: drums.