Home » Jazz Articles » Album Review » Dmitri Matheny: Cascadia

5

Dmitri Matheny: Cascadia

Dmitri Matheny: Cascadia
Flugelhornist Dmitri Matheny and his quintet play perfectly on Cascadia. There is no surprise there—with a rhythm section of pianist Bill Anschell, bassist Phil Sparks and drummer Mark Ivester backing the front line of Matheny and saxophonist Charles McNeil— perfection is the expectation.

Matheny grew up in Georgia and Arizona, spent a formative and near-obligatory stint in New York City, and played for a time in the band of pianist Amina Figarova—another jazz artist who knows something about crafting gorgeous music.

Cascadia is, in part, a celebration of Matheny's adopted home in the Northwest, where he has connected with Origin Records for this, his debut on the label. The music has roots in the mid-sixties Blue Note Records era. The project sounds relaxed, as if making these sounds is so easy to do. It is soulful. Saxophonist Charles McNeil gives off a Ben Webster vibe when he plays tenor, and pianist Bill Anschell—a long-time Origin Records artist—has that crystalline touch and the sparkle of Red Garland.

The theme—aside from the Matheny's home in the Northwest—seems to be pure beauty. His flugelhorn sound is warm and round, with a glow, like pure gold, no alloys allowed.

The disc opens with the Matheny-penned title tune, one of six of the horn man's strong, heartfelt originals presented here. He writes— and the group plays—with deep feeling. His "Dark Eyes" displays a perhaps nostalgic enchantment of the look from a past paramour, featuring a soft, gentle conversation between flugelhorn and saxophone, while "Perfect Peaches" steps lightly, on the sunny side of the street side, and "The Lonesome Road" delves deep into the soul side of sound.

The covers are chosen well—John Coltrane's "After The Rain," Tadd Dameron's "On A Misty Night," band mate Anschell's "Humble Origins," and especially—though it might seem an odd choice—Jimmy Webb's "Wichita Line Man," a 1968 top ten radio hit for Glen Campell. The familiarity of the melody, the lushness, and the lovely execution of the arrangement bring Creed Taylor's CTI Records releases to mind. An odd choice, but the right one for this polished presentation of mainstream jazz.

Track Listing

Cascadia; On a Misty Night; Evergreen Girl; Dark Eyes; Perfect Peaches; The Lonesome Road; Bourdain; Wichita Lineman; Humble Origins; After the Rain.

Personnel

Album information

Title: Cascadia | Year Released: 2022 | Record Label: Origin Records


Comments

Tags

Concerts

Jul 15 Mon

Support All About Jazz

Get the Jazz Near You newsletter All About Jazz has been a pillar of jazz since 1995, championing it as an art form and, more importantly, supporting the musicians who create it. Our enduring commitment has made "AAJ" one of the most culturally important websites of its kind, read by hundreds of thousands of fans, musicians and industry figures every month.

How You Can Help

To expand our coverage even further and develop new means to foster jazz discovery and connectivity we need your help. You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky ads plus provide access to future articles for a full year. This winning combination will vastly improve your AAJ experience and allow us to vigorously build on the pioneering work we first started in 1995. So enjoy an ad-free AAJ experience and help us remain a positive beacon for jazz by making a donation today.

More

From Me To You
Petra Van Nuis and Dennis Luxion
Tālskatis
Līva Dumpe
Breath Awareness
Derek Bailey, Sabu Toyozumi
Painter Of Dreams
Misha Tsiganov

Popular

Get more of a good thing!

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories, our special offers, and upcoming jazz events near you.