Matt Lavelle Quartet: Handling the Moment (2002)
At times the band spurs remembrances of the late Art Blakey’s fabled Jazz Messengers, as they commingle open-ended improvisational flurries with compact exchanges amid breezy choruses. Grassi serves as the catalyst via his sweeping fills, snappy rim-shots and peppery beats. On “The Kitchen,” Moshe churns out angst-ridden lines atop bassist Francois Grillot’s blustery patterns. Here, the band conveys gobs of movement as Lavelle and Moshe separate into pairs with the rhythm section by way of various mini motifs.
Lavelle’s phraseology consists of rapid 16th notes mixed with poignant statements to counterbalance his penchant for detail and nuance. The musicians integrate some of Ornette Coleman's ideas into their arsenal while venturing off into various mood-evoking passages on “Chant 1” and “Chant 2.” Handling the Moment stays strong throughout, as the quartet intelligently covers a wide spectrum, spanning free-bop, mainstream and the avant-garde. Lavelle has seemingly embarked upon the fast track with this superfine exposition. (Passionately recommended)
Track Listing: 1.Amadou
Personnel: Matt Lavelle: trumpet, flugelhorn, pocket trumpet, bass clarinet
Record Label: CIMP Records
Style: Modern Jazz