Logan Richardson: Cerebral Flow (2007)
The label Fresh Sound New Talent is aptly named in regard to the young alto saxophonist it introduces on this recording. Logan Richardson has a fresh sound, accommodating enough to please the adventurous but not so out it canâ????t be enjoyed by general jazz listeners who want to explore new territory. Despite its brainy title, Cerebral Flow is about more than conceptual ideas or even technical virtuosity. Richardsonâ????s intriguing compositions and playing convey emotionor maybe itâ????s that they provoke feeling in the listener. No doubt the very human voicings of this Kansas City-born reed player have a lot to do with that.
Richardsonâ????s ten originals are supported by a band of New York City regulars and consummate listeners who are sensitive to their nuances. Rising young guitarist Mike Moreno performs elegant standout solos on several pieces including "In The Wall" and "Urban Folk Song," and was someone to be counted on throughout a live performance celebrating the CD release at Cornelia Street Café in late April, 2007.
The inventive and masterful Nasheet Waits and the versatile Thomas Crane time-share the drumming chair on the recording; Both have distinctive personalities and playing methods but their efforts seamlessly knit from track to track. Crane pulls out all the stops on "Free The Blues" and the title track while Waits, with his swirling and rolling tension-producing rhythms, owns the first and last numbers "Turning Maze" and "In The Wall," as well as the arousing drum and saxophone duo "Like Water."
At Cornelia Street Café, the first three tunes from the CD began the set but, as befits a live jazz show, there were surprises. Crane ably handled all the drumming with an endless supply of ferociously focused energy. Richardson had many strong solos, including a total blowout on "Our Life Together." And two new numbers, the ballad "Faith" and "You Donâ????t Know My Name," the latter finished just days previously and featuring cellist Patrick Petty, were unveiled. The exploratory Richardson continues to seek new ways to express what he hears in his head and these subtly stroked strings added another color to the bandâ????s overall sound without overwhelming the interplay of the core group.
Track Listing: Turning Maze; Cerebral Flow; Urban Folk Song; Animated Concept of Being; Pacing Idiosyncrasies; Like Water; Release; Our Life Together; Free the Blues; In the Wall.
Personnel: Logan Richardson: alto and soprano saxophone; Mike Pinto: vibes; Mike Moreno: guitar; Matthew Brewer: bass; Nasheet Waits: drums (tracks 1, 4-6,10); Thomas Crane: drums (2,3,7-9).