141

Joshua Redman at Night Town

C. Andrew Hovan By

Sign in to view read count
Joshua Redman Quartet
Night Town
Cleveland, Ohio
Saturday, June 23

Talk about separating the men from the boys. Put a well-known jazz artist with a local rhythm section and you’ll get acceptable results. But, present a true working group of New York heavies and watch the sparks fly. From the moment that sax man Joshua Redman hit that first number, it was like he had entered the ring as a welterweight defending his title. His punches were tidbits of melodies or phrases that he delivered in intricate permutations, only to be countered by pianist Aaron Goldberg, who was listening and watching for Redman’s every move.
Evading the tradition of melody statement and then a chain of solos, each piece seemed to evolve in a way that obviously relied on the band’s collective inspiration at that particular moment. Goldberg’s sagacious re-working of “The Shadow of Your Smile” zigzagged through several distinct sections, including a point in the middle where Redman flexed his muscles by sustaining tones through circular breathing and getting some percussive effects by slap tonguing. Just as intriguing was the saxophonist’s closing gambit on “Twilight and Beyond,” where he managed to go for the notes in between the cracks, giving things a decidedly Middle Eastern flavor. Technically endowed to the max, bassist Reuben Rogers and drummer Gregory Hutchinson were remarkable, in support and in their own solo statements, with Redman frequently offering vocal encouragement to both from the sidelines.
If there was to be one minor sticking point, it would have to be Redman's choice of tunes, the majority of which coming mainly from his penultimate album Beyond. As strong a writer as he is, with many albums under his belt, a bit more varied a program would have made a bit more sense. As for that final knockout, a blistering romp through “Donna Lee” provided an encore and confirmation of Redman’s victory nonetheless.


Shop

More Articles

Read Cheltenham Jazz Festival 2017 Live Reviews Cheltenham Jazz Festival 2017
by Nick Davies
Published: May 13, 2017
Read Omar Sosa At SFJAZZ Live Reviews Omar Sosa At SFJAZZ
by Walter Atkins
Published: May 13, 2017
Read Wadada Leo Smith At Firehouse 12 Live Reviews Wadada Leo Smith At Firehouse 12
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: May 11, 2017
Read Jazzahead! 2017 Live Reviews Jazzahead! 2017
by Henning Bolte
Published: May 11, 2017
Read Adrian Belew Power Trio at Ardmore Music Hall Live Reviews Adrian Belew Power Trio at Ardmore Music Hall
by Geno Thackara
Published: May 10, 2017
Read Bray Jazz Festival 2017 Live Reviews Bray Jazz Festival 2017
by Ian Patterson
Published: May 9, 2017
Read "George Benson at Denver Botanic Gardens" Live Reviews George Benson at Denver Botanic Gardens
by Geoff Anderson
Published: September 21, 2016
Read "Montreux Jazz Festival 2016" Live Reviews Montreux Jazz Festival 2016
by Ian Patterson
Published: July 20, 2016
Read "Electric Hot Tuna at Spruce Peak Performing Arts Center" Live Reviews Electric Hot Tuna at Spruce Peak Performing Arts Center
by Doug Collette
Published: November 27, 2016
Read "Buenos Aires Jazz Festival 2016" Live Reviews Buenos Aires Jazz Festival 2016
by Mark Holston
Published: January 9, 2017
comments powered by Disqus

Why wait?

Support All About Jazz and we'll deliver exclusive content, hide ads, hide slide-outs, and provide read access to our future articles.

Buy it!