John Scofield Band at the Trocadero Philadelphia, PA


Sign in to view read count
Just before kicking into a drum infused tune called "Jungle Fiction" off his new album entitled Uberjam, John Scofield said to the crowd, "If you can't groove in Philly, you can't groove." And groove he did.
John Scofield and his solid backing band laid down a heavy mix of grooves and jazz at the Trocadero on Thursday night to a crowd of all ages, all there to see just how wide he could stretch the boundaries of jazz music. The onlookers were a varied mix of dreadlocked jam addicts and silver-haired jazz aficionados who had heard of Scofield either through his collaborations with the jazz fusion trio Medeski, Martin and Wood or his early 80's work with the legendary Miles Davis.
The influences of both experiences were evident in the music that teetered on the brink of psychedelia while still remaining rooted in jazz. The opening tune "Acidhead" saw Scofield strutting across the stage while giving nice jazz fills to the wa-drenched rhythm guitar and bizarre samples that were the staple of fellow band member Avi Bortnick.
The title track from his new CD Uberjam lived up to its name as John Scofield let his fingers run up and down the neck of his guitar while staying within the distinctly techno beat and pre-recorded handclaps.

Throughout the show, the band was very tight and proved its versatility in the ways of jazz fusion. But the highlight of the show was "Snap Crackle Pop" which started off slow and gradually built its way to a musical frenzy that displayed some of the most creative playing of the night. Avi Bortnick, an architectural acoustics student who essentially left to join the Scofield circus, played a rhythm guitar that threatened to send his hand flying up into the rafters with its pure speed and energy. Meanwhile bassist Jesse Murphy created a musical whirlwind as he switched the sound back and forth between the left and right speakers. All of this led into a wa-laden trade-off between Scofield and Bortnick that mesmerized the crowd.

After ten songs that averaged at least ten minutes in length a-piece and that showcased the many effects pedals they had at their disposal, the band returned to encore with "Kool" which kept the crowd energized into the night.

The bill was shared with Metagroove, which served up an excellent dose of sonic mayhem to prepare the crowd for a jazz show tailor-made for Philly.


comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Redwood City Salsa Festival 2017 Live Reviews Redwood City Salsa Festival 2017
by Walter Atkins
Published: October 17, 2017
Read AJAZZGO Festival in Cali, Colombia Live Reviews AJAZZGO Festival in Cali, Colombia
by Mark Holston
Published: October 13, 2017
Read CEO Experiment With Kurt Rosenwinkel at The Sugar Club Live Reviews CEO Experiment With Kurt Rosenwinkel at The Sugar Club
by Ian Patterson
Published: October 11, 2017
Read "The Stanley Clarke Band At Kuumbwa Jazz Center" Live Reviews The Stanley Clarke Band At Kuumbwa Jazz Center
by Walter Atkins
Published: July 3, 2017
Read "Pittsburgh JazzLive International Festival 2017" Live Reviews Pittsburgh JazzLive International Festival 2017
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: June 24, 2017
Read "Mat Maneri and Tanya Kalmanovitch at Korzo" Live Reviews Mat Maneri and Tanya Kalmanovitch at Korzo
by Tyran Grillo
Published: August 18, 2017
Read "Impressions of Monterey Jazz Festival 2017: MJF At 60" Live Reviews Impressions of Monterey Jazz Festival 2017: MJF At 60
by Walter Atkins
Published: October 6, 2017
Read "Dwiki Dharmawan's Pasar Klewer Plays Indonesia" Live Reviews Dwiki Dharmawan's Pasar Klewer Plays Indonesia
by John Ephland
Published: March 25, 2017
Read "Arturo Sandoval At Yoshi's Oakland" Live Reviews Arturo Sandoval At Yoshi's Oakland
by Walter Atkins
Published: August 17, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

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