How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.
It just so happens that he currently makes his home in Cleveland, Ohio, yet pianist/organist Dan Wall is a world class player who could hold his own in New York, LA or just about anywhere. An integral part of guitarist John Abercrombie’s trio for some eight years now (see and hear Open Land and Tactics ), Wall rarely sits at the Hammond B3 for in-town gigs, but has made a strong attempt to develop a voice on the instrument through recordings with Abercrombie and his last disc as a leader for Enja.
This latest release elevates the music to an even more sublime plane, due in no small part to the company Wall keeps- Boston legends Jerry Bergonzi on tenor sax and Mick Goodrick on guitar, plus New York drummer Billy Drummond. Aside from a few standards, Wall writes the lion’s share of the tunes and they’re chock full of the kind of long and sinuous lines and moody harmonies that mark his playing in general. Not as organically funky (no pun intended) as a Jimmy Smith or Jack McDuff, but certainly a bit more intellectual than such current peers as Larry Goldings, Wall uses space and elongated phrases in such a way that his musical speech patterns are as distinct as the literary tongue of Gertrude Stein. Contemporary and progressive, Wall avoids cliché and puts a new twist on the standard organ combo.
Track Listing: Witchcraft, 22 Bar Waltz, On the Inside Looking In, The Masquerade Is Over, The New Blues, 5 Minute Funk, Night Song, Clouds, 86, I Fall In Love Too Easily
Personnel: Dan Wall (organ), Jerry Bergonzi (tenor saxophone), Mick Goodrick (guitar), Billy Drummond (drums)