Support All About Jazz

All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Pay $20 and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page, plus this box and the slideout box on the right for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help
366

Orrin Evans: Easy Now

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count Views
Orrin Evans: Easy Now For those who may have been disappointed by the Philadelphia pianist-composer Orrin Evans' recent experiments with backbeats and electric keyboards, Easy Now marks a notable return to swinging on acoustic instruments. But this new venture is primarily a tribute to the late Don Evans, a gifted playwright and educator, as well as Orrin's father.

If these compositions are any indication, Don Evans must have been complex, thoughtful, and unpredictable, perhaps a bit like the jutting measure of 5/4 time that concludes each chorus of "Don't Fall Off The L.E.J.," which is in all other aspects a fast 4/4 cooker. Actually, like most of the musicians who work in the new mainstream of today's jazz world, Orrin Evans uses composition to create modern challenges for modern impovisers. This would also include the drum thwacks that constitute part of the line of "Captain Black."

Further, the playing here is consistently top-shelf, giving these tunes a worthy presentation. Evans often plays percussively, playing clusters, even pounding the piano. But that's hardly all he does. He can play gently and lyrically, or he can spin a long, swinging line. Although he sometimes alludes to Monk, Orrin Evans is very much his own man. Saxophonist Ralph Bowen is also his own man. Heard here on alto and soprano sax rather than his customary tenor, Bowen reveals a lush, warm sound on each horn, almost as if he were trying to combine Eric Dolphy with Benny Carter or perhaps Lucky Thompson. He swings up a storm on "Don't Fall Off The L.E.J." and "Dorm Life."

Finally, J.D. Allen should be singled out for his warm, deeply moving tenor sax playing on "Song For My Father." He and Evans play the Horace Silver classic as a duet, in a stately ballad that may be the highlight of the album.


Track Listing: Captain Black, BM, For DE, Don't Fall Off The L.E.J., Easy Now, Bonus Round, Dance On The Moon, Dorm Life, Song For My Father, Don't Fall Off The L.E.J. (cont.).

Personnel: Orrin Evans, piano; Ralph Bowen, alto and soprano sax; Mike Boone, bass; Byron Landham, drums. Track 9 only: J.D.Allen, tenor sax. Tracks 5, 7 only: Eric Revis, bass. Tracks 1,2,3, 5 only: Rodney Green, drums.

Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Criss Cross | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


CD/LP/Track Review
Interviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Live Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
The Evolution Of Oneself
The Evolution Of...
Smoke Sessions Records
2015
buy
Mother’s Touch
Mother’s Touch
Posi-Tone Records
2014
buy
Mother's Touch
Mother's Touch
Posi-Tone Records
2014
buy
It Was Beauty
It Was Beauty
Criss Cross
2013
buy
Flip The Script
Flip The Script
Posi-Tone Records
2012
buy
Freedom
Freedom
Posi-Tone Records
2011
buy
Mike Moreno Mike Moreno
guitar
Rufus Reid Rufus Reid
bass, acoustic
Chris Cheek Chris Cheek
saxophone
Alan Pasqua Alan Pasqua
piano
Jimmy Greene Jimmy Greene
saxophone

More Articles

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

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