All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

2

Jeff Denson Quartet: Concentric Circles

Jerome Wilson By

Sign in to view read count
The immediate standout feature of Jeff Denson's group is that he uses a bassoon as the reed instrument. That gives an interesting twist to the quartet's sound.

Denson's compositions are a free-ranging mix of fast-paced progressive jazz and pretty ballads. The nimble, woody tone of Paul Hanson's bassoon gives an intellectual feel to the shifting tempos of pieces like "City Life" and "Look Before You Leap" that suggests the quirky music of old Canterbury Sound jazz-rock bands like Hatfield and the North but his work on "Wishing Well" and "21st Century Blues" proves he can play with a bit of soul as well.

"A Thought That Lingers" and "Time Waits for No One" are attractive ballads that feature Denson's bowed bass prominently alongside Dan Zemelman's sensitive piano. On "Once The Door Opens" the leader sings wordlessly over a lush romantic melody traced out by the piano and bassoon and "Wishing Well" is a full blown pop tune that Denson sings earnestly in a attractive light tenor voice.

There are also more conventional jazz sounds. "Circle" is a charging up-tempo piece with hard swinging piano and "21st Century Blues" has drummer Alan Hall 99 beating out a funky New Orleans based groove for the other musicians to dance over. Denson in particular gets deep into the pocket here and the entire CD closes with a sensitive solo arco bass rendition of Duke Ellington's "I Got It Bad."

Jeff Denson's original-sounding compositions would make this CD stand out in any circumstance but the use of a bassoon makes it even more unique.

Track Listing: City Life on Trains; Anticipation; A Thought That Lingers; Wishing Well; Look Before You Leap; Time Waits for No One; 21st Century Blues; Once the Door Opens; Circle; I Got It Bad.

Personnel: Jeff Denson: double bass, vocals; Paul Hanson: bassoon; Dan Zemelman: piano; Alan Hall: drums.

Title: Concentric Circles | Year Released: 2016 | Record Label: Ridgeway Records

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.

For a Brand New Day

For a Brand New Day

Jeff Denson
Outside My Window

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Outside My Window

Outside My Window

Ridgeway Records
2018

buy
Concentric Circles

Concentric Circles

Ridgeway Records
2017

buy
Concentric Circles

Concentric Circles

Ridgeway Records
2016

buy
Jeff Denson + Lee Konitz

Jeff Denson + Lee...

Self Produced
2015

buy
Jeff Denson Trio + Lee Konitz

Jeff Denson Trio +...

Ridgeway Records
2015

buy
Secret World

Secret World

Thrill Jockey
2012

buy

Related Articles

Read Return to the Future CD/LP/Track Review
Return to the Future
by Mark Sullivan
Published: November 17, 2018
Read Telepathy CD/LP/Track Review
Telepathy
by Chris Mosey
Published: November 17, 2018
Read The Whole Thing Is Just There CD/LP/Track Review
The Whole Thing Is Just There
by John Bricker
Published: November 17, 2018
Read Haydn: Symphony No. 39, Symphony No. 87, Mozart – Sinfonia Concertante CD/LP/Track Review
Haydn: Symphony No. 39, Symphony No. 87, Mozart –...
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: November 17, 2018
Read Rogue Star CD/LP/Track Review
Rogue Star
by Glenn Astarita
Published: November 17, 2018
Read Out in the Open CD/LP/Track Review
Out in the Open
by Jack Bowers
Published: November 16, 2018
Read "Journey" CD/LP/Track Review Journey
by Troy Dostert
Published: July 1, 2018
Read "On The Brink Of A Lovely Song" CD/LP/Track Review On The Brink Of A Lovely Song
by Chris Mosey
Published: April 15, 2018
Read "Pharaohs From Outer Space" CD/LP/Track Review Pharaohs From Outer Space
by Chris May
Published: July 1, 2018
Read "Tailwind" CD/LP/Track Review Tailwind
by Gareth Thompson
Published: October 8, 2018
Read "Simiskina" CD/LP/Track Review Simiskina
by John Sharpe
Published: December 26, 2017
Read "Flow" CD/LP/Track Review Flow
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: November 20, 2017