121

John Polito: Crossing The Line

Jim Santella By

Sign in to view read count
With a focus on melody, pianist John Polito allows his compositions to ebb and flow with the tide. The forces of Nature play rather conservatively into the picture. Much of the session remains content to float drum backbeats and piano cascades in a smooth jazz backdrop.

Mother Nature provided the earliest forms of music. Early man must surely have appreciated some of that. But don't we take for granted those elements that return day after day? Here, Polito is giving us the opportunity to stop and reflect on the everyday music around us. A piano/cello duet portrays fields of wildflowers, gently massaged by the slow wind. Violin joins them for more impressionism. This time it's "In Motion," with mechanical scenes of the world's industrial players at work. Rollers, presses, gears, rotary fans and the constant humdrum of an assembly line would offer the same rhythms. Polito simply adds a gorgeous violin melody to all of that. His synthesizer seems capable of making any sound. Much of the album, however, rides too far with a moaning piano melody alongside its crying cello companion. Like the meandering waters of a mountain creek, Polito's music flows true without altering its course. The music is predictable.

"Spanish Rain" makes for a refreshing change of pace by dancing to a loping Caribbean rhythm in 5/4. The syncopation of "Aurora Alegre" makes it the high point of the album. Trumpet and trombone are added to classical guitar mastery to fold in both mariachi and flamenco elements. In contrast to the rest of Polito's album, this one contains excitement. Polito, guitarist Andy Abad and trumpeter Paul Witt capture the essence of Latin jazz with high spirits. One track, however, does not alter the mood of John Polito's debut album: smooth and predictable impressionism.


Track Listing: Euphoria; Spanish Rain; Time and Space; Aurora Alegre; Walk in the Clouds; Union; In Motion; Heaven Knows; Safe Passage; Home.

Personnel: John Polito- piano, keyboards; Doug Lunn- bass; Martin Florez- drums, percussion; Joe Nazzaretta- soprano saxophone, tenor saxophone; Paul Witt, Paul Salvo- trumpet; David Ryan- trombone; Charlie Bisharat- violin; Andy Abad- guitar; Ramiro Belgardt- cello; "The Last Minute Players"- string section.

| Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Pat Metheny Pat Metheny
guitar
Russell Malone Russell Malone
guitar, electric
George Benson George Benson
guitar
Michael Brecker Michael Brecker
sax, tenor
Chris Botti Chris Botti
trumpet
Alphonse Mouzon Alphonse Mouzon
multi-instrumentalist
Clark Terry Clark Terry
trumpet
Spyro Gyra Spyro Gyra
band/orchestra
Ramsey Lewis Ramsey Lewis
piano
Joe Sample Joe Sample
piano
Steve Khan Steve Khan
guitar

More Articles

Read The Picasso Zone CD/LP/Track Review The Picasso Zone
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: February 23, 2017
Read The MUH Trio – Prague After Dark CD/LP/Track Review The MUH Trio – Prague After Dark
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Les Deux Versants Se Regardent CD/LP/Track Review Les Deux Versants Se Regardent
by John Sharpe
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Molto Bene CD/LP/Track Review Molto Bene
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Fellowship CD/LP/Track Review Fellowship
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 22, 2017
Read E.S.T. Symphony CD/LP/Track Review E.S.T. Symphony
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 22, 2017
Read "Soundscapes" CD/LP/Track Review Soundscapes
by Jim Olin
Published: July 25, 2016
Read "Tributango" CD/LP/Track Review Tributango
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: December 13, 2016
Read "Meeting At The Parting Place" CD/LP/Track Review Meeting At The Parting Place
by Dave Wayne
Published: October 1, 2016
Read "Oddara" CD/LP/Track Review Oddara
by James Nadal
Published: October 15, 2016
Read "Iridescent Clouds" CD/LP/Track Review Iridescent Clouds
by James Nadal
Published: September 24, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!