Learn How

We need your help in 2018

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz is looking for 1,000 backers to help fund our 2018 projects that directly support jazz. You can make this happen by purchasing ad space or by making a donation to our fund drive. In addition to completing every project (listed here), we'll also hide all Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

4

Joan Torres's All Is Fused: Before

Jeff Dayton-Johnson By

Sign in to view read count
Bassist Joan Torres calls his group All Is Fused. Before, the band's début recording, features electric bass, electric guitar and (mostly) electric keyboards. Is this a fusion album?

Yes and no. Torres knows his fusion history, and appropriates from it with a sure touch. On "Doorway," the group channels the light samba sound of pianist Chick Corea's Return to Forever (ECM, 1972). On "Another World" and "The Chase," in contrast, they draw upon the rapid-fire guitar lines (here, doubled on electric bass) heard on drummer Billy Cobham's Spectrum (Atlantic, 1973), equally derived from bebop and heavy metal.

But elsewhere, the sound is one of energetic bop ("Vicissitudes") or mid-tempo post-bop ("Disbelief," "True"). In short, this is intelligent electro-acoustic jazz in the vein of Donny McCaslin's Perpetual Motion (Greenleaf, 2011), not the pile-driving rock-funk sound of Headhunters or other mid-1970s purveyors of the fusion genre.

Pianist David Ojeda and guitarist Sergio González, in particular, are given generous solo space. Spirited, if at times a little green, soloists, each achieves transcendent moments. Alto saxophonist Jonathan Suazo, meanwhile, is more assured, and on "Disbelief" renders a solo of Julian "Cannonball" Adderley-like bluesy fluency. Drummer Fernando García is especially imaginative and energetic on the upbeat numbers.

Torres himself is reserved as a soloist. When he steps forward (as on "Disbelief" and "True"), he offers a tasteful and restrained improvisation.

The compositions display a dynamic and stylistic diversity; they tend to be pleasing sequences of chords more than appealing melodies.

Torres and his young confrères are part of an effervescent young jazz scene in Puerto Rico. Another leading light of that scene is guitarist Gabriel Vicéns, whose fine, ambitious début Point In Time (self-produced, 2012), preceded Before by a few months. (Vicéns's record also featured Suazo's alto sax.) Vicéns takes the guitar chair on the last two cuts of Torres's record, where his matrix-like improvisational approach complements perfectly the sound of Torres's group.

Track Listing: Doorway; Another World; Vicissitudes; Disbelief; True; The Chase; Tragic End; Enlightenment.

Personnel: Jonathan Suazo: alto saxophone; David Ojeda: piano; Sergio González: guitar (1-6); Gabriel Vicéns: guitar (7-8); Joan Torres: bass; Fernando García: drums.

Title: Before | Year Released: 2012 | Record Label: Self Produced


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Bad Hombre CD/LP/Track Review Bad Hombre
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 12, 2017
Read Aladdin's Dream CD/LP/Track Review Aladdin's Dream
by Ian Patterson
Published: December 12, 2017
Read Glow of Benares CD/LP/Track Review Glow of Benares
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: December 12, 2017
Read Magic Circle CD/LP/Track Review Magic Circle
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: December 12, 2017
Read A Gathering Foretold CD/LP/Track Review A Gathering Foretold
by Geannine Reid
Published: December 12, 2017
Read Swinging In The Holidays CD/LP/Track Review Swinging In The Holidays
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 11, 2017
Read "Stage 'N Studio" CD/LP/Track Review Stage 'N Studio
by Jerome Wilson
Published: August 8, 2017
Read "Think Ahead" CD/LP/Track Review Think Ahead
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: July 8, 2017
Read "Juxtaposition" CD/LP/Track Review Juxtaposition
by David A. Orthmann
Published: March 9, 2017
Read "Luck Child" CD/LP/Track Review Luck Child
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 16, 2017
Read "Tangents" CD/LP/Track Review Tangents
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: November 9, 2017
Read "Bill Evans – Another Time: The Hilversum Concert" CD/LP/Track Review Bill Evans – Another Time: The Hilversum Concert
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: May 24, 2017

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!