Joshua Breakstone: A Jamais (2004)
Joshua Breakstone is back with what he loves doing best: playing guitar with a melodic grace. One could even see it as an immaculate articulation, his lines clean, his notes uncomplicated, doublets that augment the shape, improvisations creating craft of a high order.
Breakstone has been in his straight-ahead groove over the space of 17 albums. He continues to exhibit that innate strength in his writing, which he takes to a laudable plateau. What makes it all the more so in this instance are his companions on this journey, bassist Louis Petrucciani and drummer Joel Allouche. They slip right into the frame and then imbue it with verve.
The trio kicks off on the title song, which translates into “Forever.” It’s a bebop sizzler, Breakstone’s thick notes in cascade spurred by Allouche’s light touch. The melody comes across strongly as Breakstone improvises on the line, giving the chase and the head to Allouche. The pace is slowed down when they are “Sittin’ on the Thing With Ming.” Breakstone unravels the theme with a fetching bounce to his step, and while Allouche is up front with his accents, Petrucciani is given room to articulate with a short, effective solo. The bassist gets more room to show his mettle and a fertile mind on “B’s Way” with vibrant timbre and a close connect with Allouche as they interlock in dialogue. Breakstone solos on “Hallucinations,” lending the Bud Powell composition a pleasing sonority, and on “Chanson des Cevennes,” which he shades in soft, pastel hues.
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Track Listing: A Jamais; B
Personnel: Joshua Breakstone