All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

286

Happy Apple: Body Popping - Moon Walking - Top Rocking

Glenn Astarita By

Sign in to view read count
“Happy Apple” is a Minneapolis based modern jazz trio featuring multi-reedman Michael Lewis, drummer David King and electric bassist Erik Fratzke. On Body Popping - Moon Walking – Top Rocking the band articulate somewhat of a blood and guts approach. With the lengthy opener titled “The Barstow Sizzler” the trio advance through subtle microtonal passages while concurrently working the free-jazz side of the spectrum and exploring delicate themes, yet climactically pick up steam via rollicking and downright explosive interplay. Hard funk/free-bop/jazz prevails throughout, as the band’s imperious sense of verve and pulse pay huge dividends! Saxophonist Michael Lewis generally spearheads the often turbulent and circuitous paths atop a heavy and thoroughly vibrant bottom on compositions such as “Marvin Says”. Here, fender bassist Erik Fratzke shows his impressive chops with a blistering and impossibly fast solo as David King supplies the crisp drumming along with a shrewd flair for dynamics and flinging African-style tom fills. The name of the game is something like – keep things on the upswing yet don’t allow the listener to become complacent. With “Marvin Says”, Lewis extrapolates airy, complex and predominately fluid lines through his soprano sax while spurring the band into some extracurricular activities!

The musicians take a much needed rest on the affable yet somewhat uneventful soul-blues ballad, “Where Does A Stranger Go On Christmas Eve” yet come back revitalized and vengeful on the post-Bop/Funk piece, ”The Express Lane Really Isn’t All That Fast”. Throughout all of the sweeping choruses and punchy rhythms Lewis and Fratzke pursue tasty yet expertly executed unison lines while Lewis also exhibits his skillful employment of extended breathing techniques - from top to bottom.

Happy Apple is a band with a firmly rooted mission in mind as they pursue the - “new jazz” way of thinking - which for all intents and purposes is a fairly open-ended conceptual proposition. Therefore, Body Popping – Moon Walking –Top Rocking is engagingly hip, charmingly boisterous and loads of fun! Recommended! * * * *


Personnel: Erik Fratzke; Fender Bass: David King; Drums, Cymbals & Waterphone: Michael Lewis; Soprano, Alto & Tenor Saxophones.

Title: Body Popping - Moon Walking - Top Rocking | Year Released: 2000 | Record Label: No Alternative Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Postcard Collection CD/LP/Track Review
Postcard Collection
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 21, 2018
Read Der Dichter Spricht CD/LP/Track Review
Der Dichter Spricht
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: June 21, 2018
Read Dodecahedron CD/LP/Track Review
Dodecahedron
by Mark Corroto
Published: June 21, 2018
Read The Chopin Project CD/LP/Track Review
The Chopin Project
by Geno Thackara
Published: June 21, 2018
Read Walk The Walk CD/LP/Track Review
Walk The Walk
by Friedrich Kunzmann
Published: June 21, 2018
Read Grime Scene CD/LP/Track Review
Grime Scene
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: June 20, 2018
Read "Live At The Fillmore East 1968" CD/LP/Track Review Live At The Fillmore East 1968
by Doug Collette
Published: April 22, 2018
Read "Transatlantic" CD/LP/Track Review Transatlantic
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: March 22, 2018
Read "Motion" CD/LP/Track Review Motion
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 17, 2018
Read "Aleka" CD/LP/Track Review Aleka
by Ian Patterson
Published: November 21, 2017
Read "Passin' Thru" CD/LP/Track Review Passin' Thru
by Ian Patterson
Published: July 20, 2017
Read "Song of No Regrets" CD/LP/Track Review Song of No Regrets
by Jack Bowers
Published: December 16, 2017