Rez Abbasi's Out of Body finds the prolific guitarist creating nine rich and wildly imaginative scenes, with the ample help of trumpeter Ron Horton (sounding a lot like Dave Douglas here), saxophonist Tony Malaby, bassist John Hebert and drummer Bruce Hall.
Though Abbasi credits Jim Hall and Pat Metheny as his primary influences, his approach to the guitar on Out of Body is more akin to Bill Frisell's restless musical mixture of cultures and genres. There seem to be many hands and many minds shaping it, though the resulting sound is staunch and singular. Much of the album can, at least to some degree, be attributed to Abassi's unique exposure to both American and Pakistani cultures. The American part of it allthe jazzprovides the band with the necessary mindset to explore various, often inimitable, worlds of melody, harmony and rhythm.
The nine selections on Out of Body are at times tempered by Abassi's attraction and knowledge of his Asian influences, though nothing ever snacks of being "ethnic." In fact, the results are at the fore of multicultural jazz. Here, at the vanguard, at least, America and the rest of the world often meet, share and succeed. It's a collective sound, a new sound, and it's good.
Personnel: Rez Abassi: guitar; Ron Horton: trumpet; Tony Malaby: tenor saxophone; John
Hebert: bass; Bruce Hall: drums.