Bobby Selvaggio: Grass Roots Movement (2011)
Bobby Selvaggio's Grass Roots Movement, marks his sixth release as leader and second outing for Arabesque Records. This quintet record follows his 2009 disc Modern Times, recorded with veteran pianist Kenny Werner. Here, the saxophonist employs some new names, an electric groove, but no worries, the musicianship retains the highest standards.
Here he switches on the power with an electric ensemble, where only drummer James Johnson is unplugged. He might as well be plugged in, however, because he animates the affair throughout. His funky drumming opens the disc with "No Turn On Red," a vehicle for Selvaggio to show off his best Maceo Parker imitation. The saxophonist and guitarist Nir Felder match licks lockstep, here and throughout the recording. On the pecking "Chicken Legs" the two create an intricate barnyard dance, with pianist Frank LoCrasto's knobby Fender Rhodes acting as an exciting feed for the composition. Selvaggio gives plenty of room for Felder to strut his stuff, the guitarist favoring crisp notes and an economical approach. His solo on "Dust Bunnies" turns from gregarious showman to thoughtful improviser. Like Selvaggio, the guitarist has a keen sense of economy of notes, even if the pair is brining the funk.
On "Return To Sender" groove is the force driving the quintet. Felder's slippery quick guitar lines coat the road for Selvaggio to bark some honking lines over rear-shaking pulse. Same for "Fish Food" a vehicle for Selvaggio and Johnson to duet before the twisty and intricate song emerges.
Track Listing: No Turn on Red; Signature Needed; Dust Bunnies; Chicken Legs; Movement; Return to Sender; Fish Food; Spy Movie.
Personnel: Bobby Selvaggio: alto saxophone; Nir Felder: electric guitar; Frank LoCrasto: Fender Rhodes; Kip Reed: electric bass; James Johnson: drums.