9

Dave Douglas Quintet with Special Guest Aoife O' Donovan: Be Still

Glenn Astarita By

Sign in to view read count
Eminent trumpeter/composer Dave Douglas models change through innovation. Among the more important progressive jazz musicians of the past three decades, he's evolved into a motivator and guiding light for scores of seasoned jazz artisans and progressive music upstarts. This 2012 campaign bridges Americana with equal parts jazz, folk, and hymnal pieces with a translucent melding of disparate genres, often intimating a custom-built design. The music resonates across rolling hills, seamless shifts in strategy and memorably melodic storylines, graced by vocalist Aoife O' Donovan's crystalline delivery, spanning jazz and pop inflections, bluegrass, and folksiness. Besides the hymnal elements, Douglas intermittently injects some pop into the program, as the band throttles the energy quotient and broadens its focus with peppy improvisational segments.

The sensitivities surrounding the album content relate to the passing of Douglas's mother who passed away after a lengthy battle with cancer, and the hymns were performed at her memorial service. With O'Donovan's softly woven vocals, the band sometimes elicits notions of famed bluegrass artist Alison Krauss' delving into the jazz vernacular. However, Douglas's bold, lyrically charged, and melodic lines often shade, counter and support O'Donovan's harmonious choruses.

"High On A Mountain" is rooted in bluegrass, but drummer Rudy Royston imparts a hybrid shuffle groove into the mix, tinted with saxophonist Jon Irabagon's soulful lines. On "Barbara Allen," the quartet forges a translucent, hybrid Americana/jazz approach, marked by O' Donovan's deeply probing vocals, as the hornists color the primary theme via warm unison phrasings. The group kicks it up a notch on Douglas "Middle March," floating, soaring and skirting the free zone atop an asymmetrical pulse amid some expansion and contraction mechanisms.

Be Still is a significant entry into Douglas's hefty and multifarious discography. It's a beautiful production, brimming with memorable pieces that sustain recurring listens. Figuratively speaking, the program may be analogous to an elegantly wrapped gift waiting to be opened.

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
Be Still

Be Still

Greenleaf Music
2012

buy
Unable to find .

SELECT e.id, e.event_type, e.musician_id, e.entity, e.festival, e.house_concert, e.city as ecity, e.state as estate, e.country as ecountry, e.location, e.dt, e.title, e.country_subd, e.state_subd, e.city_subd, e.advertised, e.start, e.price, e.currency, entity.name AS entity_name, entity.city, entity.state, entity.country, entity.country_subd AS entity_country_subd, entity.state_subd AS entity_state_subd, entity.city_subd AS entity_city_subd, country.abbrev AS country_name, currency.name AS currencyname, entity.ticket_url AS ticket_url, musician.thumb_img AS thumb_img FROM musician_event me LEFT JOIN event e ON e.id = me.event LEFT JOIN musician ON e.musician_id = musician.id LEFT JOIN entity ON entity.id = e.entity LEFT JOIN country ON country.id = entity.country LEFT JOIN currency ON currency.id = e.currency WHERE e.active <> 0 AND e.is_planned=0 AND e.dt >= CURDATE() AND me.musician = ORDER BY e.dt LIMIT 7

You have an error in your SQL syntax; check the manual that corresponds to your MySQL server version for the right syntax to use near 'ORDER BY e.dt LIMIT 7' at line 1