162

David Sills: Down the Line

Jack Bowers By

Sign in to view read count
David Sills: Down the Line
One of the great things about jazz is that there's always room for persuasive new voices, especially those who've mastered the vocabulary and know how to swing. Saxophonist David Sills, now in his mid-thirties, qualifies easily on both counts, as he shows consistently on Down the Line, evidently his second album as a leader of his own group, although Sills has recorded with a number of other first-rank musicians.

Sills has enlisted a clever and congenial front-line partner in alto saxophonist Gary Foster, and a blue-chip rhythm section anchored by drummer Tim Pleasant and including pianist Alan Broadbent, guitarist Larry Koonse and bassist Putter Smith. Sills wrote five numbers, Koonse and Broadbent one each, to complement Milt Jackson's "Bags' Groove, Sam Rivers' "Beatrice, Antonio Carlos Jobim's "If You Never Come to Me and the Jay Livingston/Ray Evans standard "Never Let Me Go. Sills, who brings to mind such neo-swingers as Spike Robinson, Harry Allen and Scott Hamilton, and Foster, who has more than a trace of Paul Desmond in his burnished alto, are a pleasant-sounding duo whose solos are invariably resourceful and engaging—but no more so than Koonse or Broadbent, who embrace the moment whenever the spotlight shines their way.

The colorful session opens with Sills' originals "Cuttin' Back and "Down the Line (which I think should have been reversed, but that's a minor quibble). Line is especially loose and likable, hearkening back to the days of the storied Zoot Sims/Al Cohn partnership, just like his well-grooved "It's All You and Broadbent's buoyant "Time Line. Sills moves from tenor to flute on a beguiling version of "Bags' Groove, and is alone with the rhythm section on "Never Let Me Go, "Beatrice and "If You Never Come to Me.

Sills has an impressive voice, and Down the Line offers an admirable showcase for his singular talents as a composer and player. We'll no doubt be hearing more from him in the months and years to come.

Track Listing

Cuttin

Personnel

David Sills: tenor saxophone, flute; Gary Foster: alto saxophone; Larry Koonse: guitar; Alan Broadbent: piano; Putter Smith: bass; Tim Pleasant: drums.

Album information

Title: Down the Line | Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: Origin Records

Post a comment about this album

Tags

Shop Amazon

More

Read Warmer Than Blood
Warmer Than Blood
Chris Montague
Read Off Brand
Off Brand
Collage Project
Read Iron Starlet
Iron Starlet
Connie Han
Read Expanding Light
Expanding Light
Whit Dickey Trio

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary effort that will help musicians now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the bottom right video ad). Thank you.

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.