Drummer/percussionist Rob Hart may be based in the San Francisco Bay Area, but his music knows no one particular home. On 3000 Realms Of 10 Worlds, Hart works from a world-wise vantage point, liberally utilizing, tweaking, and mixing the stylistic vocabulary and components endemic to various locales. In this respect, he creates something of a broad-minded statement that varies from track-to-track but doesn't feel disjointed; some artists look to create a cohesive-and-consistent sound when they make a record, but Hart intentionally produces something that's a bit more sprawling in nature.
Hart, a graduate of Berklee and member of Vic Firth's education team, has long embraced diversity in his sideman pursuits, working with everybody from The Isley Brothers to in-demand bassist Larry Grenadier to Poison's C.C. DeVille. That love of different styles and sounds comes through in his own work, as he references everything from Indian music ("Saffron") to reggae ("Xaminer") to Brazilian samba grooves ("Samba De-Luchia") during the course of this wide-ranging program. In addition to the various originals that make up Hart's travelogue, he delivers two interesting rewritesa flute-enhanced take on The Beatles' "I Will" and a dynamically expansive trip through Led Zeppelin's "Kashmir." Both numbers put the spotlight on the drummer's inventive arranging skills.
3000 Realms Of 10 Worlds features ten out-and-out songs, but Hart also intersperses six brief snippets"Revenge Of Waldo" parts 1- 6into the mix. These short sound snatches range from open ("Part 1") to funky ("Part 2") to slick and fusion-laced ("Part 4").
The album has its downsides, which include a lack of melodic riches and the tendency to occasionally come off more like a stylistic guide or overview than a single, solidly packaged artistic statement, but its upsides make up for that; 3000 Realms Of 10 Worlds features more than its fair share of fine playing and engaging grooves. That's enough to keep spirits high and ears pinned to the speakers throughout this inventive record.
Track Listing: Revenge Of Waldo, Part 1; Balumaina Astria; Crystal Blue Cloud; Revenge
Of Waldo, Part 2; I Will; Saffron; Revenge Of Waldo, Part 3; Xaminer;
Samba De-Luchia; Revenge Of Waldo, Part 4; Evergreen Forest; Kashmir;
Revenge Of Waldo, Part 5; Tis; Hellavicca; Revenge Of Waldo, Part 6.
Personnel: Rob Hart: drums, effects, triangle, tambourine, vocal konokol,
programming; timbales, dholak, maracas, marimba, hand bells, dumbek,
handbells, Turkish hand drum, toms, percussion; Kurt Ribak: acoustic
bass (1); Greg Sankovich: keyboards (1, 2, 8), organ (8), piano (11);
Sheilani Alix: vocals (2); Jason Muscat: 6 string bass (2, 5, 8, 14,
15); Karl Perazzo: congas (2, 5); Dan Zemelman: piano (3, 9); Doug
Pohorski: acoustic bass (3, 9, 11); Eric Levy: piano (5), mini moog
(5), organ (14); Glen Berger: flute (5), wood flute (5); Fareed Haque:
acoustic guitar (6); Jeff Massanari: electric guitar (6); Stuart Hamm:
fretless bass (11); Scott Sorkin: guitar (12); Lorn Leber: guitar
(12); Kai Eckhardt: fretted bass, fretless bass (12).