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Gregory Tardy: Abundance

AAJ Staff By

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An abundance of conceptual borrowing characterizes Gregory Tardy’s first release for Palmetto. Tardy cut his debut album nearly ten years ago and has been a not unknown figure on the jazz scene for the past six. His path has crossed with a number of recognizable names: Andrew Hill, Wynton Marsalis, Jay McShann. Evidently heavily influenced by John Coltrane, Tardy lifts wholesale ideas the jazz great originated. He dedicates "Warring Spirits", a work in three movements, to God. The parallel to A Love Supreme is inescapable. "Giant Steps" inspired the less strenuous "Educated Guesswork". Here, Tardy emulates Trane at much mellower and reduced tempo. An overall sense of restraint pervades the session. The listener feels that neither the leader nor his able colleagues every really cut loose. Even on the up-tempo portions of "Iconoclasm", Tardy refrains from utilizing the high register that the soprano sax affords—no characteristic sharp wail is evident. Some individual epiphanies shine through. On Conly’s "Nene’s Way", Tardy displays his technical versatility: he opts for the clarinet and produces an elegant solo. During his guest appearance on the opening track, alto saxophonist Miguel Zenon blows bright, ethereal lines. Colligan’s right hand runs and loping chords on "Iconoclasm" demonstrate a groovy rhythmic sensibility. And the presence of Woody Williams on drums infuses the album with the energy that it has: the drummer actively moves around his kit pounding rolls and fills that support the soloists. Through Abundance, Gregory Tardy provides a well constructed if stylistically derivative offering.

Track Listing: Plan B; Talkative Tucker; The Very Thought of You; Warring Spirits; Bata Interlude; Nene

Personnel: Gregory Tardy - tenor saxophone, clarinet, soprano saxophone; George Colligan - piano; Sean Conly - bass; Woody Williams - drums, bata drums, percussion; Miguel Zenon - alto saxophone on Plan B

| Record Label: Palmetto Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


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