With Courtney Pine, British saxophonist Sheppard has been rated world class for long enough to get bored with the tag. This year his new quintet sound uses tablas and percussion in place of a conventional drumkit to realise tunes that Sheppard wrote on guitar for the first time. As a result there's an extra punch and accessibility to the rhythms, and a decidedly sexual fragrance in the air, while touring well off the beaten track in Africa and India has brought a infectious, tropical richness to the melodies as well.
Sheppard's own bedroom-eyed, passionate yet lyrical sound remains intact and Colin Town's lush production could reward his new label with a sizeable hit. Meanwhile Steve Lodder's gorgeous keyboards and Chris Laurence's velvety double bass would fill a hole the size of the Albert Hall.
TRACK LISTING:Natural Calling, Just Below the Surface, Peshwari, Learning to Wave, Almost Sophia, A Certain Lift, Joined At The Hip, Bye Bye, Quiet Corners.
PERSONNEL:Andy Sheppard - tenor and soprano sax, Steve Lodder - keys , Chris Laurence - double bass, John Parricelli - guitar, Paul Clarvis - percussion, tabla, Sharda Sahai - tablas.
All About Jazz has been a pillar of jazz since 1995, championing it as an art form and, more importantly, supporting the musicians who create it. Our enduring commitment has made "AAJ" one of the most culturally important websites of its kind, read by hundreds of thousands of fans, musicians and industry figures every month.
You Can Help
To expand our coverage even further and develop new means to foster jazz discovery and connectivity we need your help. You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky ads plus provide access to future articles for a full year. This winning combination will vastly improve your AAJ experience and allow us to vigorously build on the pioneering work we first started in 1995. So enjoy an ad-free AAJ experience and help us remain a positive beacon for jazz by making a donation today.