4

David Arnay: 8

C. Michael Bailey By

Sign in to view read count
David Arnay: 8 Los Angeles pianist/arranger/composer David Arnay releases his third recording as a leader in the theme-minded 8. Eight signifies both the number of selections on the disc as well as the sequential sum of instruments added to each performance, from solo to octet performance. So, the premise is Arnay adds one instrument to each piece as he ascends from one to eight.

Arnay's thematic approach is both clever and educational. He opens the disc with a swinging solo performance of Duke Ellington and Juan Tizol's "Caravan." Arnay's left hand is in total command of the piece while his right informs of the melody and improvisation. His solo is well constructed and optimally paced on this one of two standards among the eight selections. His sure command of the keyboard demonstrated here directs the remainder of the disc.

The addition of Edwin Livingston's bass on "11-12-11" and then drummer Peter Erskine on "Billville" illustrates the filling out of the standard jazz rhythm section. Livingston's sure sense of time and Erskine's generously considered drumming make a trio recording of the three very attractive. Arnay proves an ideal accompanist for the bass solo, knowing just how much filigree to supply beneath the bass.

Tenor saxophonist Doug Webb joins the trio, creating the time-tested horn-fronted jazz quartet on "Step Four." Arnay's composition harkens back to that hinge between hard and post bop, where rules and progressions did not fully give way to the greater freedom to come. Webbs tone is slippery and facile. The quintet offering, "Old Man Says" has Webb doubling on bass clarinet and adding percussionist Munyungo Jackson, who fills in some rhythmic silences. Jackson provides a vaguely ethnic mode overwhich Webb and Arnay modulate.

With the greater band complexity, comes richer and deeper composition and playing. the sextet arrangement of John Coltrane's "Giant Steps" transforms the chordally dense piece into a breezy island sway highlighting Paco Loco's piquant guitar playing. Thematically well-developed, 8 wins points on both its invention and listenability. multi-reedist Webb shows off his wealth of skills just as Arnay redefines what "arrangement" means.

Track Listing: Caravan; 11/12/11; Billville; Step Four; Old Man Says; Giant Steps Six of One; Dream Groove.

Personnel: David Arnay: keyboards; Edwin Livingston: bass (2-8); Peter Erskine: drums (3-8); Doug Webb: tenor saxophone (4, 7), bass clarinet (5), soprano saxophone (6); reeds (8); Munyungo Jackson: percussion (5-8); Paco Loco: guitar (6, 8); Dan Fornero: trumpet (7, 8); Vikram Devasthali: trombone (7, 8).

Year Released: 2013 | Record Label: Self Produced


Shop

More Articles

Read Welcome to Swingsville! CD/LP/Track Review Welcome to Swingsville!
by Jack Bowers
Published: March 26, 2017
Read Points of View CD/LP/Track Review Points of View
by Geno Thackara
Published: March 26, 2017
Read Migration Blues CD/LP/Track Review Migration Blues
by Chris Mosey
Published: March 26, 2017
Read Recent Developments CD/LP/Track Review Recent Developments
by Karl Ackermann
Published: March 26, 2017
Read N.O. Escape CD/LP/Track Review N.O. Escape
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: March 26, 2017
Read Reflections CD/LP/Track Review Reflections
by Mark Sullivan
Published: March 25, 2017
Read "Linus + Skarbø / Leroux" CD/LP/Track Review Linus + Skarbø / Leroux
by Dave Wayne
Published: April 21, 2016
Read "The Songbook Sessions: Ella Fitzgerald" CD/LP/Track Review The Songbook Sessions: Ella Fitzgerald
by Edward Blanco
Published: May 21, 2016
Read "Getting All The Evil Of The Piston Collar!" CD/LP/Track Review Getting All The Evil Of The Piston Collar!
by Budd Kopman
Published: October 3, 2016
Read "Love For Sale" CD/LP/Track Review Love For Sale
by Geannine Reid
Published: June 23, 2016
Read "Early Americans" CD/LP/Track Review Early Americans
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: May 30, 2016
Read "Cactus" CD/LP/Track Review Cactus
by Karl Ackermann
Published: August 26, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: DOT TIME RECORDS | BUT IT  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!