Peter Erskine / Bob Mintzer / Darek Oles / Alan Pasqua: Standards 2, Movie Music (2010)

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Peter Erskine / Bob Mintzer / Darek Oles / Alan Pasqua: Standards 2, Movie Music
Sometimes, the most powerful statements are those delivered directly: gentle, yet forceful in their complete commitment, and without the trappings of excess.

With the sudden, unexpected passing in 2008 of Dave Carpenter
Dave Carpenter
Dave Carpenter
1959 - 2008
bass
—the talented and busy West Coast bassist who had played with everyone from Buddy Rich
Buddy Rich
Buddy Rich
1917 - 1987
drums
, Maynard Ferguson
Maynard Ferguson
Maynard Ferguson
1928 - 2006
trumpet
and Woody Herman
Woody Herman
Woody Herman
1913 - 1987
band/orchestra
to Scott Henderson, Allan Holdsworth
Allan Holdsworth
Allan Holdsworth
b.1948
guitar
and Lee Ritenour
Lee Ritenour
Lee Ritenour
b.1952
guitar
—drummer Peter Erskine
Peter Erskine
Peter Erskine
b.1954
drums
and pianist Alan Pasqua
Alan Pasqua
Alan Pasqua

piano
had to find a new bassist for their longstanding trio, last heard on Standards (Fuzzy Music, 2008).

Fortunately, both had intersected before with Darek Oles
Darek Oles
Darek Oles
b.1963
bass, acoustic
. Oles, who emigrated from Poland to the United States in 1988 and has since worked with everyone from Charles Lloyd
Charles Lloyd
Charles Lloyd
b.1938
saxophone
to Brad Mehldau
Brad Mehldau
Brad Mehldau
b.1970
piano
and Pat Metheny
Pat Metheny
Pat Metheny
b.1954
guitar
, had also contributed to Pasqua's graceful My New Old Friend (Cryptogramophone, 2005), on which Erskine also performed. So, with the chemistry already intact, Erskine, Pasqua and Oles decided to expand to a quartet by adding Yellowjackets
Yellowjackets
Yellowjackets

band/orchestra
saxophonist Bob Mintzer
Bob Mintzer
Bob Mintzer
b.1953
saxophone
for Standards 2, Movie Music, an album that revisits an array of scores ranging from themes to films like Rosemary's Baby and Cinema Paradiso, to songs from musicals like West Side Story and The Gay Divorcee. That every one of this recording's performers is a virtuoso, capable of technical wizardry and musical pyrotechnics, only makes Standards 2's avoidance of such trappings all the more impressive.

With elegant, respectful and reverent arrangements (shared amongst the quartet) that nevertheless provide room for understated interaction—often at a level so deep it's more felt than heard—every subtle nuance is made transparent and the soundscape three-dimensional, through the use of KMF Audio's Stereo Tube Microphone, a revolutionary and evolutionary recent design that also contributed to the pristine clarity of Standards. Once again recorded direct to two-track, Standards 2 expands on the strengths of Standards: a desire to get to the true heart and soul of the music; and, by checking all egos at the door, relying on a collective sound where, ironically, no individual shines...but, ultimately, everyone does. Complex, yet approachable arrangements like Dr. Kildare's familiar "Three Stars Will Shine Tonight" contrast with the ambling swing of West Side Story's enduring "Somewhere." A Latin-esque take on The Gay Divorcee's iconic "Night and Day" provides some of the disc's brightest moments, juxtaposed with the dark but surprisingly beautiful (given its subject matter) main theme to Rosemary's Baby.

Once again demonstrating the value of less over more—the equal significance of what isn't played as well as what is—this is music with an enduring appeal that spans over fifty years and has become so ingrained in the zeitgeist of the 20th Century as to still possess significance in the 21st. Standards 2, Movie Music is a warm and cozy program from a quartet of musical friends with nothing to prove, but plenty to gain from sharing this single day's recording with fans of mainstream jazz with an emphasis on refined lyricism and unfailing taste.

Track Listing: Tara's Theme; Somewhere; Dr. Kildare; Three Stars Will Shine Tonight; Night and Day; Rosemary's Baby; Cinema Paradiso Intro; Cinema Paradiso; I Concentrate on You; For All We Know.

Personnel: Bob Mintzer: tenor saxophone; Alan Pasqua: piano; Darek Oles: bass; Peter Erskine: drums.

Record Label: Fuzzy Music


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