Kelly Rossum: Renovation (2004)
Rossum's group has developed an assured voice. Both trumpeter Rossum and tenor saxophonist Chris Thomson blow with attitude, a nearly brash self-assurance on the up-tempo tunes, giving the sound an edge and a push forward modernity; while on the ballads—especially Jimi Hendrix's "Little Wing"—the feeling is more mainstream. The Hendrix tune opens with a Bill Evans-like piano rumination by Chris Lomheim, floating notes that gel into the melody as the horns blow in for a beautifully introspective eight minutes.
Ornette Coleman's "Bugpowder," at a too-brief minute and a quarter, is a small, intense maelstrom, while Rossum's "Taxi Funeral Waltz" has the horn men blowing free behind a metronomically steady rhythm, before they explore some exquisite saxophone/trumpet interplay on "The Two of Us."
The set walks the line between experimental and mainstream, remaining approachable throughout.
Visit Kelly Rossum at www.krossum.com .
Track Listing: Cheap Cigars, Lead Soldiers, Fly Away, Bugpowder, Disposable Assets, Life on Mars, Little Wing, Hennepin Bridge, Taxi Funeral Waltz, Glass Wheel, The Two of Us, Francis Loop
Personnel: Kelly Rossum--trumpet; Chris Thomson--tenor sax; Chris Lomheim--piano and Fender Rhodes; Michael O'Brien--bass and electric bass; J.T. Bates--drums
Record Label: 612 Sides