12

Melissa Aldana: Back Home

Mark F. Turner By

Sign in to view read count
Saxophonist Melissa Aldana leaves an indelible impression of her musicality in Back Home, her fourth release as a leader. She was the first female instrumentalist and first South American to win the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition in 2013. One listen to her tenor's flowing birdsong and the symbiotic connection with longtime trio mates bassist Pablo Menares and drummer Jochen Rueckert it is understood the work she's put in and the gift she possesses.

First there's Aldanas's tonality. A gorgeous throaty tenor filled with nuance and bravura that hints of influences touching on great tenors (Sonny Rollins) and contemporary stylists (Mark Turner). Yet Aldan's voice is her own—soulful, inquisitive, and deeply rooted in both the past and present; roots which germinated in Santiago, Chile where her father and grandfather were prominent musicians. These disciplines are extended in the Aldana's exquisite phrasing and expressive fluidity in the glorious opener "Alegria."

Next is the trio communication where the musicians operate on a telepathic level while implementing independent codes of expression. The unit has gelled into tight consistency powered by Menares's muscular bass fingerings and Rueckert peppered drums in rhythm-speak that covers robust swing in "Obstacles" or a blues swagger in "Servant #2."

The trio format exposes the truths about musicians. This one is flawless. With original tracks written by each player and an emotive cover of the Kurt Weill/Ira Gershwin classic "My Ship" Back Home exudes a timeless quality which fully marks Aldana's presence as a first class jazz artist.

Track Listing: Alegria; Desde La Lluvia; Obstacles; En Otro Lugar; My Ship; Servant #2; Before You Go; Time; Back Home.

Personnel: Melissa Aldana: tenor saxophone; Pablo Menares: bass; Jochen Rueckert: drums.

Title: Back Home | Year Released: 2016 | Record Label: Wommusic


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read ON Tour CD/LP/Track Review ON Tour
by John Kelman
Published: October 22, 2017
Read On a Distant Shore CD/LP/Track Review On a Distant Shore
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: October 22, 2017
Read Friends & Heroes: Guitar Duets CD/LP/Track Review Friends & Heroes: Guitar Duets
by Roger Farbey
Published: October 22, 2017
Read Signal 9 CD/LP/Track Review Signal 9
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 22, 2017
Read For the Love of You CD/LP/Track Review For the Love of You
by Jack Bowers
Published: October 21, 2017
Read Recent Developments CD/LP/Track Review Recent Developments
by John Sharpe
Published: October 21, 2017
Read "From Two Balconies" CD/LP/Track Review From Two Balconies
by Geno Thackara
Published: March 21, 2017
Read "05:21" CD/LP/Track Review 05:21
by Jim Trageser
Published: November 28, 2016
Read "Skylines" CD/LP/Track Review Skylines
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: November 13, 2016
Read "Think Ahead" CD/LP/Track Review Think Ahead
by Geannine Reid
Published: June 2, 2017
Read "Mikrojazz!: Neue Expressionistische Musik" CD/LP/Track Review Mikrojazz!: Neue Expressionistische Musik
by Doug Collette
Published: October 1, 2017
Read "The Time Verses" CD/LP/Track Review The Time Verses
by Geannine Reid
Published: April 1, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.