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John Lindberg Ensemble: Bounce

Glenn Astarita By

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Bassist/Composer John Lindberg gained some exposure early on his teens with saxophonist Anthony Braxton . Lindberg has also been a long standing member of the elegant “String Trio of NY”. His latest solo effort, “Bounce” represents his 22nd recording as a leader or co-leader. All the compositions on “Bounce” were authored by Lindberg.

John Lindberg has always collaborated with the creme de la creme of cutting edge jazz artists. His talents on the bass are exemplary. His composing and arranging skills are to be lauded. Lindberg has released some venerable cd’s over the years, namely his “Quartet” which featured the legendary trombonist Albert Manglesdorff and classically trained pianist Eric Watson. On “Bounce” Lindberg continues his explorations with the young, great Dave Douglas on trumpet, saxophonist Larry Ochs of ROVA, and longtime associate Ed Thigpen on the traps.

The opener “Firewood Duet” is a subdued straight up Lindberg and Douglas duet . Enter the marvelous Ed Thigpen on drums for “The Terrace”. The music opens up, Douglas is in fine form, Lindberg walks the bass and Thigpen’s cymbal work accentuates the beat. Enter saxophonist Larry Ochs on the title cut “Bounce”. An up tempo romp featuring some hair splitting dialogue between Douglas and Ochs. “Bounce” is an engaging composition which suggests 1940’s Big Band Swing in post bop fashion. “Fortune On A Sphere” is Douglas, Lindberg and Thigpen executing a reflective and ethereal tone. Douglas’ lyricism sets the pace while Lindberg and Thigpen tread ever so lightly in the background. “Common Goal” stretches the boundaries of classical and jazz music. Mr. Thigpen gets his chance to stretch out on the kit in grand fashion. Ed Thigpen has earned his living as the drummer of choice for jazz vocalists and piano trios. John Lindberg has seemingly opened the door for Mr T to expand his jazz vocabulary as in previous Lindberg Quartet manifestations. “Eleven Thrice” borders on free jazz and saxophonist Larry Ochs delves into this framework with all the intensity he can muster.

“Bounce” is a diverse, upbeat and very gratifying recording. At times angular and rigid in execution; however, Lindberg and co. pursue modern ideas while paying homage to jazz basics. “Bounce” is not exclusively a free jazz experiment but an aggregation of innovative musicians with futuristic visions. The blend of ideas serves as a melting pot for sparkling creativity. Lindberg is an extremely gifted composer and musician who aligns himself only with the best. “Bounce” represents another notch in an already impressive resume.


Title: Bounce | Year Released: 1998 | Record Label: Black Saint


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