177

Jamie Stewardson: Jhaptal

Troy Collins By

Sign in to view read count
Jamie Stewardson: Jhaptal A Berklee and New England Conservatory graduate, guitarist Jamie Stewardson spent time gigging with jazz legends George Russell, Jimmy Giuffre and Mat Maneri after paying his dues backing up pop and soul acts on cruise ships. With a stellar backing band and a solid release to his name, Stewardson's days supporting road weary Motown acts should be a thing of the past. Jhaptal is Stewardson's second album as a leader.

Knitting Ornette Coleman's harmolodic theory, Arnold Schoenberg's dodecaphonics and Indian ragas into post bop structures might seem lofty and pretentious, but in Stewardson's hands these sources never overshadow his lyrically resonant written structures, instead augmenting them. By rearranging tone rows and dragging out melodic lines to unusual metric lengths, he uses advanced compositional techniques to create a subtly unconventional but accessible sound. Firmly rooted in post bop harmony and odd-metered rhythms, Stewardson and company add an inventive twist to an often staid genre.

As a soloist, Stewardson favors a bright, slightly overdriven, but undistorted electric guitar tone, with an economy in his phrasing that belies his virtuosity. Joining him on the front line is pervasive Downtown tenor saxophonist Tony Malaby, who plays with surprising restraint. Capable of torrid frenzy and multiphonic hysteria, Malaby plays it cool, illuminating the written material at hand. At times he blends so seamlessly with Stewardson during unison passages that they sound like one instrument. Vibraphonist Alexi Tsiganov contributes shimmering comping and ebullient solos, enriching the entire session with his lilting phrasing. Ubiquitous bassist John Hebert and stalwart drummer George Schuller lock tight into the odd-metered grooves, playing with restraint and simmering energy.

Focusing on mid-tempo rhythms with epic-length melodic phrases, Stewardson's compositions lend themselves to extended development. Varying their attack with subtle coloration and vacillating dynamics, the musicians bring as much heart-felt dedication to introspective balladry as they do punchy verve to harmolodic funk.

On this promising effort, Stewardson demonstrates the kind of creative potential that so few seem capable of in mainstream jazz.


Track Listing: T Can Shuffle; Bubbles; Jhaptal; Combinatoriality; Rest Area; Olive Oil; Cruel Traps; Dig Muse; For Dale and Roberta.

Personnel: Jamie Stewardson: guitar; Tony Malaby: tenor saxophone; Alexei Tsiganov: vibraphone; John Hebert: bass; George Schuller: drums.

Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: Fresh Sound New Talent | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
John Scofield John Scofield
guitar
Lage Lund Lage Lund
guitar
Les Paul Les Paul
guitar, electric
Torben Waldorff Torben Waldorff
guitar, electric
Doug Raney Doug Raney
guitar
Louis Stewart Louis Stewart
guitar
Harley Card
guitar
John Stowell John Stowell
guitar

More Articles

Read A Dark and Stormy Day CD/LP/Track Review A Dark and Stormy Day
by Dave Wayne
Published: March 1, 2017
Read Pocono Git-Down CD/LP/Track Review Pocono Git-Down
by Edward Blanco
Published: March 1, 2017
Read Rímur CD/LP/Track Review Rímur
by Henning Bolte
Published: March 1, 2017
Read Schönbrunn CD/LP/Track Review Schönbrunn
by Tyran Grillo
Published: March 1, 2017
Read Northern Adventures CD/LP/Track Review Northern Adventures
by Jack Bowers
Published: February 28, 2017
Read Collider CD/LP/Track Review Collider
by John Sharpe
Published: February 28, 2017
Read "The Havana Sessions" CD/LP/Track Review The Havana Sessions
by James Nadal
Published: June 11, 2016
Read "A Woman's Work..." CD/LP/Track Review A Woman's Work...
by Mark Corroto
Published: January 30, 2017
Read "Cinema Spiral" CD/LP/Track Review Cinema Spiral
by Troy Collins
Published: October 22, 2016
Read "Gold" CD/LP/Track Review Gold
by Jim Olin
Published: January 25, 2017
Read "Sky Begins" CD/LP/Track Review Sky Begins
by Dave Wayne
Published: July 11, 2016
Read "Cactus" CD/LP/Track Review Cactus
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: August 24, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: Jazz Near You | GET IT  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!