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Guitarist David Fiuczynski has done projects all over the map. His straight-ahead jazz work established him as a versatile and articulate player. His crossover projects, including the notorious Screaming Headless Torsos and Black Cherry Acid Lab,integrated improvisation with a rock/funk feel.
On Jazz Punk, Fuze plays standards. But not the way you'd expect. Here's the concept: tunes from Frederic Chopin, Pat Metheny, Jimi Hendrix, Shannon Jackson, and John Phillip Sousa, to name a few, are twisted, contorted, and stretched into unrecognizable reinterpretations. Fuze plays with three different bands, adding even more of a sense of open-endedness. One band is essentially the core of the Screaming Headless Torsos: a deep-groove funk quartet. The second band is new to these ears: a trio featuring the multi-talented drumming of Zach Danziger, who demonstrates his proficiency in the drum-n-bass idiom on Metheny's "Bright Size Life." It's quite refreshing to hear a live drummer work with a style born in electronica. Finally, the third group contains Fuze's long-time collaborator Santi Debriano on acoustic bass (!) and the more straight-ahead drummer Billy Hart. This group lays down a more jazzy sound.
Like any of Fuze's projects, Jazz Punk displays refreshing openmindedness. Due to the variety of the program, it's a bit hit-or-miss... but mostly hit. Regardless, you have to admire his audacity for arranging a Chopin Prelude for guitar and drums. This is the kind of boldness that forces an artist to self-release his record instead of putting it out on a major label. Jazz Punk is available from David Fiuczynski on the web.
Track Listing: Bright Size Life; Third Stone From the Sun; Prelude Opus 28 No. 4; Red Warrior; African Game Fragment; La
Fiesta; Star Crossed Lovers; Jungle Gym Jam; Stars and Stripes Whenever; Hipgnosis.
Personnel: David Fiuczynski, guitar; Fima Ephron, bass; Daniel Sadownick, percussion; Gene Lake, drums; Tim LeFebvre,
bass; Zach Danziger, drums; Rufus Cappandocia, cello; Santi Debriano, bass; Billy Hart, drums.
Jazz is a continuing revelation. The best show I ever attended was the
Roots Picnic at Penn's Landing in Philadelphia, or was it Robert
Glasper's Experiment at Lincoln Center, or was it Chick Corea with
Brian Blade at Oberlin College? Most of all I enjoy playing guitar and
composing beats with my Brooklyn-based group Space Captain.