Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

327

Bobby Avey: A New Face

Dan McClenaghan By

Sign in to view read count
The CD is called A New Face, referring to the set's leader, pianist Bobby Avey. He was an even "newer" face on 2006's Vienna Dialogues (Zoho Music), a duet set with veteran saxophonist David Liebman that explored the music of pre-twentieth century classical composers, including Mendelssohn, Schumann, Mahler and Brahms.

For this, Avey's debut as a leader, the pianist has put together modern-thinking jazz trio, in the mode of Jason Moran or Vijay Iyer. Liebman's back, sitting in on four of the eight tunes, fanning the flames of an already fiery set of sounds.

The composition are all Avey originals. Its music treads the edge, often with an attitude. Avey and his cohorts balance between controlled Iyer-like intensity, veering into abject abandon, beginning with the dark-toned "Late November." The piano trio tune begins with a driving, hypnotic rhythm, burning with an implacable forward momentum with moments of beautiful release shot through with explosive outbursts.

Liebman joins in on "In Retreat." It's a drifting mood that gathers energy and reveals Avey's very assured artistic approach that includes metronomic repetition on his idiosyncratic solo, out of which Liebman's soprano explodes.

The sequencing of the set is deftly executed, alternating between trio and quartet, with one saxophone/piano duet thrown in. Bassist Thomas Kneeland and drummer Jordan Pearlson add distinctive, assertive and modernistic frames of mind to the sound, with Kneeland opening the title tune with a piquant bass solo leading into some of Avey's most tender playing. On "Half is Less Than Half," drummer Pearlson flirts with clamor, much in the manner of Jim Black, but it's a flirtation that always serves Avey's sometimes prickly compositions well.

The lone duet piece, "Influence," is a peaceful reverie, with Liebman's soprano sounding particularly round-toned, and Avey's piano touch rolling into more lush areas as the mood grows in the direction of the ominous. Then the trio goes for it on "Insight" with an exaggerated tension release dynamic, and closes out with Liebman back in the fold, wailing with an inspired heartiness on tenor saxophone in front of a tight rhythmic architecture constructed by the newer faces in the trio.

A stand-out debut by an indisputable rising star.

Track Listing: Late November; In Retreat; Delusional; A New Face; Half is Less Than Half; Influence; Insight; Time Unfolding.

Personnel: Bobby Avey: piano; David Liebman: soprano and tenor saxophones (2, 4, 6, 8); Thomas Kneeland: bass (1-5, 7-8); Jordan Pearlson; drums (1-5, 7-8).

Title: A New Face | Year Released: 2010 | Record Label: Jay Dell Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and you'll support us in the process. Learn how.

Album Reviews
Read more articles
Inhuman Wilderness

Inhuman Wilderness

Innervoice Jazz
2017

buy
Inhuman Wilderness

Inhuman Wilderness

Innervoice Jazz
2016

buy
Authority Melts From Me

Authority Melts From...

Whirlwind Recordings
2014

buy
A New Face

A New Face

Jay Dell Records
2010

buy

Related Articles

Read Day to Day Album Reviews
Day to Day
By Paul Naser
May 24, 2019
Read Theia Album Reviews
Theia
By Jim Worsley
May 24, 2019
Read Ain't Nothing But a Cyber Coup & You Album Reviews
Ain't Nothing But a Cyber Coup & You
By Dan McClenaghan
May 24, 2019
Read Nexus Album Reviews
Nexus
By Jakob Baekgaard
May 23, 2019
Read The Second Coming Album Reviews
The Second Coming
By Daniel Barbiero
May 23, 2019
Read Luminária Album Reviews
Luminária
By John Sharpe
May 23, 2019