All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

10

Jamie Saft Quartet: Blue Dream

C. Michael Bailey By

Sign in to view read count
If RareNoise Records has a characteristic sound as ECM Records has a characteristic sound, that sound is defined Jamie Saft. Whether it is the unholy ministry of Slobber Pup or the plaintive solo piano of his recent Solo A Genova (RareNoise, 2018), multi-instrumentalist Saft has brought Giacomo Bruzzo's and Eraldo Bernocchi's eclectic-electric British label front and center of not just the jazz world, but the music world.

Saft has recorded widely, most notably with John Zorn, Wadada Leo Smith, Roswell Rudd, Iggy Pop, Marc Ribot, Bill Laswell, Cyro Baptista, and Dave Douglas. He is responsible for producing the most magnificent noise as evidenced on recordings like, Berserk!'s Berserk! (RareNoise Records, 2013) and Slobber Pup's Black Aces (RareNoise Records, 2013) and Pole Axe (RareNoise Records, 2015), along with his collaboration with guitarist Joe Morris on Plymouth (Rare Noise, 2014). Overlapping with his noisemaking is Saft's redefinition of acoustic jazz over the past five years as heard on: The New Standard (RareNoise, 2014); Ticonderoga (Clean Feed, 2015); Strength & Power (RareNoise, 2016); Loneliness Road (RareNoise, 2017); and Solo A Genova (RareNoise, 2018)

Jamie Saft's penetration of acoustic jazz continues with his present quartet recording Blue Dreams. Immediately, I thought of John Coltrane's great 1960's quartet, circa A Love Supreme. "Vessels" opens with sustained bass notes in a simple harmonic figure by Saft, very much in keeping the McCoy Tyner style of the time. Tenor saxophonist Bill McHenry plays Coltrane's part, without the screeching and loss of mind. Like an early '60s Coltrane solo, the ensemble begins simply before setting out to make a sonic statement, both musically and dramatically. "Equanimity" is introduced by drummer Nasheet Waits, when, at the 1:36 mark the rest of the band enters, anxious and excited. Bassist Bradley Jones carefully chooses his figures and times in such a way to propel the music in a swinging and unpredictable manner.

The first of three standard's, "Violets for Your Furs," reels the band back into mainstream mode, capturing the sound of 1950s Miles Davis. It is a beautiful revelation. "Sweet Lorraine" is taken at a loping pace, Saft playing between the lines with Jones' ever near-the-beat pulse avoiding temp tachycardia. McHenry plays as straight as Saft, quaint and beautifully. "Walls" offers an expansive answer to "Lorraine" with Jones providing a continuo arco. McHenry barley rattles the reeds, a sound like stretching parchment, while Saft favors his beloved low notes with sustain. Like a Coltrane performance, the piece is all introduction. It is worthwhile to consider that there is no resolution in music like this, only an extended consideration. "Words and Deeds" follows the same formula of the opening "Vessels," brooding and impressionistic. The final standard "There's a Lull in My Life" completes the recording beautifully and appropriately. McHenry first duets with Jones, Waits brushing in the background. By the time Saft gets there, things are well underway, introspectively. Within this musical microcosm, Saft and company blow the dust off of and update a storied method of performance.

Track Listing: Vessels; Equanimity; Sword’s Water; Violets for Your Furs; Blue Dream; Infinite Compassion; Sweet Lorraine; Walls; Decamping; Words and Deeds; Mysterious Arrangements; There’s a Lull in My Life.

Personnel: Jamie Saft Piano; Bill McHenry: tenor saxophone; Bradley Christopher Jones: acoustic bass; Nasheet Waits: drums.

Title: Blue Dream | Year Released: 2018 | Record Label: RareNoiseRecords

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Shop Music & Tickets

Click any of the store links below and you'll support All About Jazz in the process. Learn how.

CD/LP/Track Review
Bailey's Bundles
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Solo a Genova

Solo a Genova

RareNoiseRecords
2019

buy
Blue Dream

Blue Dream

RareNoiseRecords
2018

buy
Solo a Genova

Solo a Genova

RareNoiseRecords
2018

buy
Blue Dream

Blue Dream

RareNoiseRecords
2018

buy
Loneliness Road

Loneliness Road

RareNoiseRecords
2017

buy
Serenity Knolls

Serenity Knolls

RareNoiseRecords
2017

buy

Related Articles

Read Circulate Susanna CD/LP/Track Review
Circulate Susanna
by Karl Ackermann
Published: November 13, 2018
Read Jazzamenco CD/LP/Track Review
Jazzamenco
by Jack Bowers
Published: November 13, 2018
Read You Have Options CD/LP/Track Review
You Have Options
by Glenn Astarita
Published: November 13, 2018
Read Heroes, Saints and Clowns CD/LP/Track Review
Heroes, Saints and Clowns
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: November 13, 2018
Read Bowie, Berlin & Beyond CD/LP/Track Review
Bowie, Berlin & Beyond
by Glenn Astarita
Published: November 13, 2018
Read For You CD/LP/Track Review
For You
by Patrick Burnette
Published: November 12, 2018
Read "That Doesn't Even Look Like You" CD/LP/Track Review That Doesn't Even Look Like You
by Jack Bowers
Published: December 6, 2017
Read "Glow of Benares" CD/LP/Track Review Glow of Benares
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: December 12, 2017
Read "Great Lakes" CD/LP/Track Review Great Lakes
by Doug Collette
Published: November 26, 2017
Read "Diablo en Brooklyn" CD/LP/Track Review Diablo en Brooklyn
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: January 11, 2018
Read "Tenderly featuring Gilad Hekselman" CD/LP/Track Review Tenderly featuring Gilad Hekselman
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: December 30, 2017
Read "Food Foragers" CD/LP/Track Review Food Foragers
by Don Phipps
Published: March 13, 2018