224

Scott Colley: Empire

Mark F. Turner By

Sign in to view read count
Track review of "January"

Scott Colley: Empire Empire is another exceptional release by Scott Colley, the first-call bassist whose deep strings have been the mainstay with numerous leading artists and a part of several fine recordings including drummer Antonio Sanchez's outstanding Live in New York at Jazz Standard (Cam Jazz, 2010). "January," the album's opener, sets a mood that is as cinematic as it is compelling. The twang of strings from Bill Frisell's guitar, the whispered wind song of percussive bells from drummer Brian Blade, and the elongated notes from trumpeter Ralph Alessi all create a ethereal backwoods aura, as the rhythmic pocket grows more intense like a storm on the outskirts of a quiet rural town.

It has been said that "A picture is worth a thousand words," and the cover art for Empire secretly confirms that truth through a Colley family photo (circa 1875-family home and post office in Empire, Kansas). "January"'s strong vibe found its inspiration, more than likely, from the photo's fascinating source material:

"In 1875 Joseph J. Colby constructed the first permanent residence which was the beginning of Empire. Any hope for a prosperous future for Empire was shattered when a branch of the AT&SF Railroad was completed September 23, 1879 passing north of Empire through the present site of Galva. It didn't take long for the residents of Empire to move their buildings north to the tracks. By 1880, even the post office was closed. The beginning of Galva meant the end of Empire..."—Galva, Kansas Historical Records.


Regardless of the connection, Colley's opening track, as articulated by consummate musicians, denotes not only a stalwart bassist, but a composer who is thoughtful and creative. The track, like the photo, conveys a sense of capturing a moment in time and hints at much more to be discovered.

Personnel: Scott Colley: bass; Ralph Alessi: trumpet; Brian Blade: drums; Bill Frisell: guitar; Craig Taborn: piano.

Year Released: 2010 | Record Label: CAM Jazz | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read Petite Afrique CD/LP/Track Review Petite Afrique
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Organ Monk, The Breathe Suite CD/LP/Track Review Organ Monk, The Breathe Suite
by Roger Farbey
Published: April 29, 2017
Read The Wild CD/LP/Track Review The Wild
by Mark Sullivan
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Soul Garden CD/LP/Track Review Soul Garden
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 29, 2017
Read The Authorized Bang Collection CD/LP/Track Review The Authorized Bang Collection
by Doug Collette
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Cross My Palm With Silver CD/LP/Track Review Cross My Palm With Silver
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 28, 2017
Read "Bright Lights & Promises: Redefining Janis Ian" CD/LP/Track Review Bright Lights & Promises: Redefining Janis Ian
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 14, 2017
Read "Beginning of A Memory" CD/LP/Track Review Beginning of A Memory
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 19, 2016
Read "Time Being" CD/LP/Track Review Time Being
by Roger Farbey
Published: March 12, 2017
Read "Sol Boricua" CD/LP/Track Review Sol Boricua
by James Nadal
Published: April 30, 2016
Read "Early Americans" CD/LP/Track Review Early Americans
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 14, 2016
Read "Escape  from The Unhappy Society" CD/LP/Track Review Escape from The Unhappy Society
by Anthony Shaw
Published: February 1, 2017

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!