Support All About Jazz

All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Pay $20 and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page, plus this box and the slideout box on the right for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help
313

Bill Stewart: Incandescence

Mark F. Turner By

Sign in to view read count Views
Bill Stewart: Incandescence Sometimes it's the more unusual releases that yield the most pleasant surprises and such is the case with Bill Stewart's Incandescence. The seasoned drummer has been the percussive impetus for saxophonists Maceo Parker, Michael Brecker, guitarist John Scofield and one of today's premier B3 organists, Larry Goldings (who appears on this release). Stewart has a number of recordings as a leader, but now has a few tricks up his sleeve with the unusual trio setting of piano, Hammond organ, and drums.

Completing the triad is pianist Kevin Hays who is no stranger to forward-thinking music as heard on Fear Of Roaming (Fresh Sound, 2004). But it's not just the instrumentation or the towering skills of each member that makes Incandescence glow, but it's also Stewart's oft-times idiosyncratic and refreshing compositions.

"Knock On My Door" literally opens thing up with a quirky groove-strut, marked by the organ's off-key tonality. Hays and Goldings trade the melody, settle nicely into the pocket, as Stewart lays down the sticks with shuffles, taps, and beats. "Toad" is next, a swinger with debonair, the dual timbres of the piano and organ works wonders, each complimenting the other.

If you think this is just some passe organ-trio music, the inversely titled "Portals Opening" and "Opening Portals" would beg to differ. The former is an atmospheric tune, Stewart coloring the music with his drumming; the later, a modern hard bop piece noted by Hays' heady free piano and Goldings' reverberating bass pedal. All the tracks were composed by Stewart, and "See Ya" just might have the most personality; a French cafe-like poignancy and Goldings' revealing accordion playing.

More of this eclectic mix is heard on the second half of the recording; the abstract "Four Hand Job" and "Tell a Televangelist," a finger snapping tune with Hays' lyrical solo which contains a clever quote of Diane Warwick's 1967 hit "I Say A Little Prayer." The recording closes just as intriguingly as it began, first with Metallurgy," an eerie drum solo improvisation and then the title song with restless drums, floating organ and luminous piano. What an enjoyable and different ride, Incandescence turns out to be.


Track Listing: Knock On My Door; Toad; Portals Opening; Opening Portals; See Ya; Four Hand Job; Tell a Televangelist; Metallurgy; Incandescence.

Personnel: Larry Goldings: Hammond Organ, accordion; Kevin Hays: piano; Bill Stewart: drums.

Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Pirouet Records | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop For Jazz

CD/LP/Track Review
Live Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Space Squid
Space Squid
Pirouet Records
2016
buy
Incandescence
Incandescence
Pirouet Records
2008
buy
Keynote Speakers
Keynote Speakers
Self Produced
2005
buy
[no cover]
Telephaty
Birdology
1997
buy
[no cover]
Snide Remarks
Birdology
1995
buy
Chick Corea Chick Corea
piano
Frank Zappa Frank Zappa
guitar, electric
Chris Potter Chris Potter
reeds
Joe Lovano Joe Lovano
saxophone
Paul Motian Paul Motian
drums
Mark Turner Mark Turner
sax, tenor

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.