Home » Jazz Articles » Album Review » Ross Hammond Quartet: Adored

23

Ross Hammond Quartet: Adored

By

Sign in to view read count
Ross Hammond Quartet: Adored
Adored is the debut of Sacramento-based guitarist Ross Hammond's Quartet. Although Hammond's previous recordings have featured an array of configurations (ranging from solo recitals to spontaneous improvisations with various West Coast peers), this date is among the most impressive in his growing discography. For the first time, the relatively young guitarist leads an all-star quartet of respected veterans, including multi-instrumentalist Vinny Golia, bassist Steuart Liebig and drummer Alex Cline—all notable bandleaders in their own right.

Randy McKean's liner notes compare Hammond and company's fervent interplay to the ecstatic zeal of The New Thing—an assertion confirmed on the introductory title track. Stirred by Liebig and Cline's roiling undercurrent, Hammond's searing fretwork and Golia's trenchant tenor ascend through an intensifying series of bristling exchanges that recall the rhapsodic discourse between Sonny Sharrock and Pharoah Sanders on Sharrock's criminally out of print masterpiece, Ask The Ages (Island, 1991).

Venturing further into vanguard territory, "Hands Up!" vacillates between quixotic moods, culminating in a brutal no wave assault fraught with coarse dissonances and oblique angles that illuminate the quartet's intuitive rapport. Hammond's romantic side materializes on the charmingly straightforward lullaby "She's My Little Girl," which follows the hip modal swinger "Sesquipedalian." Revealing a wide-ranging aesthetic nestled between jazz and rock, their tuneful sing-song melodies and memorable hooks exude a distinctively harmonious West Coast sensibility far removed from the highbrow conceptualism favored by similarly aligned factions of the East Coast jazz scene.

The poignant closer, "Water Always Finds It's Way, Like The Soul," perfectly encapsulates the album's contrasting modes, seamlessly merging inside and outside approaches that ebb and flow from tranquil eddies of lyrical restraint to driving torrents of cathartic release—elevated by Wayne Peet's incisive piano filigrees. Bolstered by the stellar contributions of Hammond's venerable sidemen, Adored strikes a carefully considered balance between the accessible and the avant-garde, making it a perfect introduction to the work of an artist who deserves far greater recognition.

Track Listing

Adored; Sesquipedalian; She's My Little Girl; Joaquining; Maribel's Code; Hands Up!; Just Knowing You're There; Water Always Finds It's Way, Like The Soul.

Personnel

Ross Hammond: guitar; Vinny Golia: tenor, alto and C soprano saxophones; Steuart Liebig: bass; Alex Cline: drum set; Wayne Peet: piano (8).

Album information

Title: Adored | Year Released: 2012 | Record Label: Prescott Recordings


Comments

Tags


For the Love of Jazz
Get the Jazz Near You newsletter All About Jazz has been a pillar of jazz since 1995, championing it as an art form and, more importantly, supporting the musicians who create it. Our enduring commitment has made "AAJ" one of the most culturally important websites of its kind, read by hundreds of thousands of fans, musicians and industry figures every month.

You Can Help
To expand our coverage even further and develop new means to foster jazz discovery and connectivity we need your help. You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky ads plus provide access to future articles for a full year. This winning combination will vastly improve your AAJ experience and allow us to vigorously build on the pioneering work we first started in 1995. So enjoy an ad-free AAJ experience and help us remain a positive beacon for jazz by making a donation today.

More

Shadow
Lizz Wright
Caught In My Own Trap
Kirke Karja / Étienne Renard / Ludwig Wandinger
Horizon Scanners
Jim Baker / Steve Hunt / Jakob Heinemann

Popular

Get more of a good thing!

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories, our special offers, and upcoming jazz events near you.