Mick Rossi/Russ Johnson: New Math (2004)
“1.50” is the most straight of the compositions, if you will, with various shifts in tone and rhythm. “2.20” is a clay flute bird flight by Rossi, and the sputtering trumpet and foreboding piano of “1.13” marks the sound of something—a building? a relationship?—breaking apart, crumbling, spiraling to its end. Perhaps to enhance the “new math” theme, the duo include two songs on the disc unlisted on the CD sleeve, the first a blend of yeoman percussion and trumpet; the last cut an almost classical, recital-like duet.
In Johnson’s hands, the trumpet is an organic entity. His tone is edgy, sometimes rough, embodying the raw emotion that defines the disc. Rossi gives all of his instruments depth and color. New Math is challenging but stunning terrain, spare but beautiful, affecting to the emotions.
This review originally appeared in AllAboutJazz-New York .
Track Listing: 2.70; 3.30; 2.90; 1.91; 1.10; 1.22; 1.50; 2.20; 1.13; 2.14; 4.30.
Personnel: Russ Johnson, trumpet Mick Rossi, piano, prepared piano, percussion, clay flutes
Style: Modern Jazz