116

Christopher Parker: Full Circle

Dan McClenaghan By

Sign in to view read count
Christopher Parker: Full Circle Pianist Chris Parker's second CD release on OA2 Records, Full Circle, sounds like an exciting live set full of vigorous life, something that engages the crowd and gets them up out of their seat, dancing. It's a quintet—common enough in jazz—with the uncommon use of violin in the front line beside the saxophone, reeling out unison lines with the horn, or stepping out in sinuous solo slots.

John Nastos is the alto sax guy who breaks out the soprano horn here and there. Violinist Rob Thomas is his front line cohort. Their unison work makes for sonorities not often heard. Nastos on his a solo spots has a biting sharp edge, like a well-honed knife slicing through the ensemble sound; and Nastos brings in a gypsy atmosphere when he steps out.

But really this is about the ensemble sound and Parker's terrific compositions. The opens with the modern-leaning title tune, a burner with a glossy group sheen that gives way to alto saxophonist John Nastos, with his sharp, growly tone. "Step One" sounds like a soundtrack to a gypsy maiden dancing around a blazing camp fire. Pianist Parker takes his own keyboard dance step, ebullient and free-flowing, leading into a swinging solo by violinist Rob Thomas, who lays down a sensuous, stretched-out lines.

"Left at Bingen" begins with a quirky, stop time groove. Parker supplies a rollicking solo, and violin and sax trade statements in front of an insistent rhythm. "Stages," gives off an ominous vibe, with Nastos biting off his sharp edged notes over a funk-tinged momentum laid down by drummer Marko Marcinko and bassist Tony Marino. "Free" takes the mood in a reflective direction, with Nastos switching to the soprano saxophone, with the band providing a restrained and gorgeous backdrop. Add to the mix a particularly inspired violin solo from Thomas.

Lots of styles are offered up here, but Parker's vision keeps the whole cohesive on this stimulating set of sounds.

Track Listing: Full Circle; Step One; Left At Bingen; Stages; Free; Emmy's Shuffle; The Ride; First Light; Like I Was Saying; Up Front.

Personnel: Chris Parker: piano; John Nastos: alto and soprano saxophones; Rob Thomas: violin; Tony Marino: bass; Marko Marcinko: drums.

Year Released: 2014 | Record Label: OA2 Records | Style: Contemporary/Smooth


comments powered by Disqus

Shop

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles

More Articles

Read Neko CD/LP/Track Review Neko
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: May 25, 2017
Read Alcanza CD/LP/Track Review Alcanza
by Troy Dostert
Published: May 25, 2017
Read New Life CD/LP/Track Review New Life
by Geno Thackara
Published: May 25, 2017
Read A Social Call CD/LP/Track Review A Social Call
by James Nadal
Published: May 25, 2017
Read The Big Wig CD/LP/Track Review The Big Wig
by Ian Patterson
Published: May 24, 2017
Read The Dreamer Is the Dream CD/LP/Track Review The Dreamer Is the Dream
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 24, 2017
Read "The Long Road" CD/LP/Track Review The Long Road
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: October 30, 2016
Read "Mogoya" CD/LP/Track Review Mogoya
by James Nadal
Published: May 14, 2017
Read "Of The Night" CD/LP/Track Review Of The Night
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: August 28, 2016
Read "The Dreamer Is the Dream" CD/LP/Track Review The Dreamer Is the Dream
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 24, 2017
Read "Espiritu Zombi" CD/LP/Track Review Espiritu Zombi
by Mark Corroto
Published: August 22, 2016
Read "Time on My Hands" CD/LP/Track Review Time on My Hands
by Jack Bowers
Published: December 10, 2016

Why wait?

Support All About Jazz and we'll deliver exclusive content, hide ads, hide slide-outs, and provide read access to our future articles.

Buy it!