251

Joel Vanderheyden: Complete Life

Glenn Astarita By

Sign in to view read count
Joel Vanderheyden: Complete Life Iowa-based saxophonist and educator Joel Vanderheyden assimilates various genres into a distinct group sound, performing with members of the underground jazz group known as Koplant_No on his debut release. Complete with jazz-fusion and jazz-rock overtones, spiced with loops, samples and effects, the program projects a modicum of diversity and jazz-framed exploration. It all makes for a cunning series of polytonal movements and settings.

The ensemble's blustery and at times, hard-hitting work-ethic is devised on popping backbeats, synth driven themes and Vanderheyden's moody yet often powerful sax lines. They venture into bop and swing territory via these rather investigative compositions, occasionally hued with a driving wall of sound amid ethereal overtones. Regardless, the musicians dish out a craftily blended musical portraiture throughout various cadences, where Vanderheyden and trumpeter Brian Lewis Smith, the latter, responsible for laptop manipulations and effects, make for a potent frontline. And guitarist Steve Grismore provides an edge due to his hearty electric jazz and rock guitar voicings.

The saxophonist commences with a ballad then helps raise the temperature on "Your Medical Eye Patch Leads Me to Believe You Will Be Pillaging and Plundering...Very Soon (Pirate Song)." Smith's echo-tinged choruses conjure up a dark and misty climate during the combo funk and 4/4 gait, heard on the complex "Between Heaven and Hell There is a Drawer of Junk," where the band renders a string of false endings with linear progressions and punchy unison phrasings.

Vanderheyden's freshman album is a curiously interesting engagement. The artists don't overstate or rely heavily on any particular genre other than the core jazz framework, while the leader charges out of the gate with the impetus of a lion on a hunt. He's methodical, savvy and exhibits raw power when the situation demands it.


Track Listing: The Fall of a Superhero; Pees and Deetoo; Complete Life; Gargoyles; Pirate Song; Tanzania Life Project; Between Heaven and Hell There Is a Drawer of Junk; Simple Elegance.

Personnel: Joel Vanderheyden: tenor saxophone; Brian Lewis Smith: trumpet, laptop, effects; Steve Grismore: guitar (1, 2, 4, 6, 8); Tim Daugherty: keyboards (1, 2, 4, 6, 8); Drew Morton: bass; Rob Baner: drums, loops, samples; Brady Schlue: trombone (6); James Dreier: percussion (6).

Title: Complete Life | Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: Mize Music


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Open Book CD/LP/Track Review Open Book
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: August 17, 2017
Read Stolen Moments CD/LP/Track Review Stolen Moments
by Jack Bowers
Published: August 17, 2017
Read Sonder CD/LP/Track Review Sonder
by Troy Dostert
Published: August 17, 2017
Read Putting Off Death CD/LP/Track Review Putting Off Death
by Glenn Astarita
Published: August 17, 2017
Read Albert Mangelsdorff And His Friends CD/LP/Track Review Albert Mangelsdorff And His Friends
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 16, 2017
Read Heaven On Their Minds CD/LP/Track Review Heaven On Their Minds
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: August 16, 2017
Read "Carve" CD/LP/Track Review Carve
by Karl Ackermann
Published: March 17, 2017
Read "Obfusc/ation" CD/LP/Track Review Obfusc/ation
by Doug Collette
Published: April 18, 2017
Read "Mind Behind Closed Eyes" CD/LP/Track Review Mind Behind Closed Eyes
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: November 22, 2016
Read "Blind Curves and Box Canyons" CD/LP/Track Review Blind Curves and Box Canyons
by Karl Ackermann
Published: May 4, 2017
Read "Allied Forces" CD/LP/Track Review Allied Forces
by David A. Orthmann
Published: November 13, 2016
Read "Here’s to You..." CD/LP/Track Review Here’s to You...
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: November 9, 2016

Sponsor: JANA PROJECT | LEARN MORE  

Support our sponsor

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.