All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

277

Fred Stride Jazz Orchestra: Forward Motion

Jack Bowers By

Sign in to view read count
It takes a lot of self-confidence, not to mention talent, to compose a four-part Concerto for Jazz Orchestra that strives to paint a musical picture of certain kinds of machinery, but that is what Fred Stride has ventured to do on Forward Motion, the second half of which is devoted to Machina, a four-part suite commissioned by John Korsrud and the Hard Rubber Orchestra. Thanks in part to his perceptive notes, it's clear what Stride had in mind; whether the listener welcomes the concept or finds it musically agreeable is another matter.

In any case, one must concede that Stride's Vancouver-based ensemble unravels his elaborate charts with machine-like precision, adeptly underlining every nuance and shading while making certain that the assorted changes in tempo are squarely on the mark. Machina's opening movement comprises two parts: "Input, depicting "a type of computational machine, and "Process, which concerns itself with "the manipulation of data. Flugel Brad Turner solos on Part 1, guitarist Daryl Jahnke and trombonist Dennis Esson on Part 2. The second movement, "Colossus, portrays "very large machinery with very large solos to match by baritone saxophonist Mike Braverman and tubaist Brad Muirhead. The third movement, "Sound, delineates a mysterious machine that "can move abruptly from the softest to the loudest sound, while the final movement, "Velocity, is, as its name suggests, concerned with "machinery that is capable of tremendous speeds. Alto Campbell Ryga, trombonist Rod Murray and bassist Andre Lachance share center stage on "Sound, tenors Jon Bentley and Alvin Cornista on "Velocity.

The first half of the album, albeit comparably thematic, is explicitly more orthodox and accessible. The vigorous "Opposition Party, Stride writes, "is an attempt to depict the Canadian parliamentary system in musical terms (it's actually more conciliatory than the description implies). "Gently Swaying, a Latin chart in 7/4, speaks for itself, while "Floatation [sic] Device is an exercise in varying tempos, "A Few Shades Darker an extended blues with a "thick and somewhat dark texture, "Oddly Enough a rhythmic charmer that uses clarinets instead of saxophones in the ensemble passages (and on which clarinetist Tom Colclough sparkles with pianist Ross Taggart and drummer Bernie Arai). Tenors Bentley and Cornista engage in a lively debate on "Opposition Party, while Bentley, Colclough (alto) and flugel Tom Shorthouse are able protagonists on "Swaying, Ryga (alto) and Turner (trumpet) on "Device, Esson and trumpeter Derry Byrne on "Shades.

There's not a lot of ear candy on Forward Motion—Stride hasn't made things easy by aiming low—but discerning and open-minded listeners will uncover music that is both pleasurable and rewarding.


Track Listing: Opposition Party; Gently Swaying; Flotation Device; A Few Shades Darker; Oddly Enough; Machina: A Concert for Jazz Orchestra: Input-Process; Colossus; Sound; Velocity (79:28).

Personnel: Fred Stride: composer, arranger, conductor; Paul Baron, Derry Byrne, Brad Turner, Tom Shorthouse, Kent Wallace: trumpet, flugelhorn; Tom Colclough: alto, soprano sax, clarinet; Campbell Ryga (3,5,7): alto, soprano sax, bass clarinet; Chris Startup (1-4): alto sax; Jens Christiansen (5-9): alto sax, clarinet; Jon Bentley: tenor sax, alto clarinet; Alvin Cornista: tenor sax; Mike Braverman: baritone sax, bass clarinet; Dennis Esson, Rod Murray, Jeremy Berkman: trombone; Neil Nicholson (1-4), Brad Moorhead (5-9): bass trombone; Ross Taggart: piano; Daryl Jahnke: guitar; Andre Lachance: bass; Bernie Arai: drums; Jack Duncan: percussion.

Title: Forward Motion | Year Released: 2007 | Record Label: Cellar Live

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Postcard Collection CD/LP/Track Review
Postcard Collection
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 21, 2018
Read Der Dichter Spricht CD/LP/Track Review
Der Dichter Spricht
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: June 21, 2018
Read Dodecahedron CD/LP/Track Review
Dodecahedron
by Mark Corroto
Published: June 21, 2018
Read The Chopin Project CD/LP/Track Review
The Chopin Project
by Geno Thackara
Published: June 21, 2018
Read Walk The Walk CD/LP/Track Review
Walk The Walk
by Friedrich Kunzmann
Published: June 21, 2018
Read Grime Scene CD/LP/Track Review
Grime Scene
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: June 20, 2018
Read "The Deep" CD/LP/Track Review The Deep
by Dr. Judith Schlesinger
Published: July 4, 2017
Read "You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To" CD/LP/Track Review You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 24, 2018
Read "Passin' Thru" CD/LP/Track Review Passin' Thru
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: July 12, 2017
Read "Fela Is The Future" CD/LP/Track Review Fela Is The Future
by Chris May
Published: March 11, 2018
Read "Tied Together, Not to the Ground" CD/LP/Track Review Tied Together, Not to the Ground
by Geno Thackara
Published: July 9, 2017
Read "Accelerated Projection" CD/LP/Track Review Accelerated Projection
by Don Phipps
Published: February 14, 2018