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...

18

Tom Tallitsch: Heads Or Tales

Bruce Lindsay By

Sign in to view read count
Tenor saxophonist Tom Tallitsch makes his Posi-Tone debut with Heads Or Tales, a welcome addition to that label's impressively strong roster of straight-ahead and swinging musicians. Tallitsch has a warm tone, a lyrical and flowing style and an ability to craft solos that add to the narrative of his compositions: qualities that make the tunes—all but one his own compositions—immediately accessible, yet capable of rewarding repeated listening with fresh revelations.

While Heads And Tales is his label debut, it's actually the Cleveland-born, New York-based saxophonist's fourth album since the self-produced Duality (2005). It's the sound of an experienced and confident player; his tenor saxophone sound is stamped across the album, either crafting melodies or delivering finely-judged solos, but he never attempts to overwhelm his band mates, never outstays his welcome and never stretches a tune too far. There are plenty of other players who could learn from Tallitsch's economy of composition and interpretation.

Guitarist Dave Allen is a strongly melodic player and an emphatic second lead voice. His single-note playing flows beautifully, giving his solos a fluidity and grace that matches Tallitsch's own. "Double Shot" and "Flat Stanley" find Allen and Tallitsch trading fast-paced lines, while slower tunes, like the cool swinger "Travel Companion" and balladic "Perry's Place," give them space to share more reflective phrases underpinned by Jared Gold's Hammond organ.

Gold can almost be described as Posi-Tone's house organist, with numerous appearances on the label as leader or sideman. He is a consistently fine player, with a great sense of dynamics and a swinging, rhythmical, style. He forms an excellent partnership with drummer Mark Ferber, sharing a tough, driving, approach to the music that helps to build its power and excitement. Gold also contributes an imaginative array of tones, and some telling individual contributions such as his intense, tight solo on "Tenderfoot."

Tallitsch closes with an unusual choice of cover tunes, Neil Young's classic, "Don't Let It Bring You Down." Tallitsch plays it straight—his version just 20 seconds longer than Young's original on After The Goldrush (Reprise, 1970)—but ensures that his saxophone sound retains the mood of Young's lyric. It's just one facet of Tallitsch's abilities, as Heads Or Tales makes abundantly and enjoyably clear.

Track Listing: Coming Around; Tenderfoot; Double Shot; Perry's Place; Flat Stanley; Travel Companion; The Lummox; Dunes; Don't Let It Bring You Down.

Personnel: Tom Tallitsch: tenor saxophone; Dave Allen: guitar; Jared Gold: organ; Mark Ferber: drums.

Title: Heads Or Tales | Year Released: 2012 | Record Label: Posi-Tone Records

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

Red Giant

Red Giant

Tom Tallitsch
Perspective

Medicine Man

Medicine Man

Tom Tallitsch
Medicine Man

CD/LP/Track Review
Take Five With...
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
All Together Now

All Together Now

Posi-Tone Records
2015

buy
RIDE

RIDE

Posi-Tone Records
2014

buy
Heads Or Tales

Heads Or Tales

Posi-Tone Records
2012

buy
 

Perspective

HighNote
2009

buy
Medicine Man

Medicine Man

OA2 Records
2008

buy
 

Duality

HighNote
2005

buy

Related Articles

Read Fullmoon CD/LP/Track Review
Fullmoon
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 24, 2018
Read Arise! CD/LP/Track Review
Arise!
by Chris May
Published: April 24, 2018
Read Plus One CD/LP/Track Review
Plus One
by Jerome Wilson
Published: April 24, 2018
Read Never Bet The Devil Your Head CD/LP/Track Review
Never Bet The Devil Your Head
by Troy Dostert
Published: April 24, 2018
Read Oscar Peterson Plays CD/LP/Track Review
Oscar Peterson Plays
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: April 23, 2018
Read State Of The Baritone Volume 2 CD/LP/Track Review
State Of The Baritone Volume 2
by Mark Corroto
Published: April 23, 2018
Read "Bismuth" CD/LP/Track Review Bismuth
by Geno Thackara
Published: November 29, 2017
Read "Tensegridad" CD/LP/Track Review Tensegridad
by John Sharpe
Published: January 2, 2018
Read "Out of Place" CD/LP/Track Review Out of Place
by Roger Farbey
Published: September 6, 2017
Read "Heptagon" CD/LP/Track Review Heptagon
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 23, 2017
Read "Fly Or Die" CD/LP/Track Review Fly Or Die
by John Sharpe
Published: July 10, 2017
Read "Resonance" CD/LP/Track Review Resonance
by Karl Ackermann
Published: July 23, 2017