All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

48

John Scofield Trio: EnRoute

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count
Cerebral jazz fans play in the same sound box as the John Scofield Trio does for 73 minutes of collective prowess. EnRoute is aptly named, for it is a musical journey whose speculative effect needs no conclusion. The trip is worth a long ride and that is what we get.

John Scofield’s exercise of unconventional playing embraces the kind of musical exploration that drives jazz forward with optimism. In nine songs, Scofield articulates ideas whose foundations transcend so many boundaries that EnRoute could serve as an educational analysis of improvisation.

The live recording provides quite a set. On “Wee,” drummer Bill Stewart’s downbeats nicely propel Scofield’s improvisations on the beat to encourage and anticipate the combustion that follows. On “Toogs,” Scofield’s guitar surges and recedes like a tide that one can only feel inside the groove. “Over Big Top” concludes the recording in the more reverent style that has characterized Scofield’s career.

Bill Stewart’s holistic approach to the drums speaks volumes about the power of jazz literacy in younger players. Stewart, younger than his trio mates by decades, clearly inspires Scofield and Swallow into areas that jazz drumming often dares not to go. Stewart’s fearless quest for greater rhythmic literacy drives the cumulative innovation of this record.

“Hammock Soliloquy” is the highlight of EnRoute. Scofield, Swallow and Stewart revisit the hammock theme in altered reprise to show us how far a field they take us in between such returns. Swallow’s solo raises the bass clef to the height of seasoned creativity. Stewart’s multitudinous tom work lulls us inside our own serenity before returning to the final refrain. This is one literary soliloquy.

“Over Big Top” is precisely the tour de force that concludes a record of huge aspiration. Take the most intense and inspired playing one can imagine on bass, guitar and drums, give each its turn to raise the instrument’s playing to the status of anthem and you get this eleven minutes. By song’s end, listeners cheer as loudly as the crowd at the Blue Note did when this record was documented.

Visit Verve on the web.


Track Listing: Wee; Toogs; Name That Tune; Hammock Soliloquy; Bag; It Is Written; Alfie; Travel John; Over Big Top.

Personnel: John Scofield: guitar; Steve Swallow: electric bass; Bill Stewart: drums.

Title: EnRoute | Year Released: 2004 | Record Label: Verve Music Group

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Northern Migrations CD/LP/Track Review
Northern Migrations
by Ian Patterson
Published: April 22, 2018
Read Egregore CD/LP/Track Review
Egregore
by John Eyles
Published: April 22, 2018
Read Lifelike CD/LP/Track Review
Lifelike
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: April 22, 2018
Read Whatever Possessed Me CD/LP/Track Review
Whatever Possessed Me
by Don Phipps
Published: April 22, 2018
Read Live At The Fillmore East 1968 CD/LP/Track Review
Live At The Fillmore East 1968
by Doug Collette
Published: April 22, 2018
Read Live CD/LP/Track Review
Live
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: April 21, 2018
Read "Best of the Bootlegs 2017" CD/LP/Track Review Best of the Bootlegs 2017
by Doug Collette
Published: February 24, 2018
Read "Investigations" CD/LP/Track Review Investigations
by Roger Farbey
Published: March 27, 2018
Read "Kickin' Child - The Lost Album 1965" CD/LP/Track Review Kickin' Child - The Lost Album 1965
by Doug Collette
Published: June 24, 2017
Read "Then and Now" CD/LP/Track Review Then and Now
by Duncan Heining
Published: May 2, 2017
Read "Malnoia" CD/LP/Track Review Malnoia
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 24, 2017
Read "The Source" CD/LP/Track Review The Source
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 26, 2017