Make a difference: Support jazz online

Support All About Jazz Your friends at All About Jazz are looking for readers to help back our website upgrade project. Of critical importance, this project will result in a vastly improved design across all devices and will make future All About Jazz projects much easier to implement. Click here to learn more about this project including donation rewards.

246

Ken Fowser & Behn Gillece: Little Echo

Dan Bilawsky By

Sign in to view read count
Tenor saxophone and vibraphone frontlines—while not as commonplace as two horn teams—have their place in history. Lionel Hampton and Stan Getz had a marvelous meeting in the studio and Milt Jackson recorded with Sonny Rollins, Coleman Hawkins and John Coltrane, on different occasions. Bobby Hutcherson added to this legacy, working with Dexter Gordon and maintaining a fruitful partnership with Harold Land, and now tenor saxophonist Ken Fowser and vibraphonist Behn Gillece are furthering this legacy.

Little Echo is the sophomore release from this pair and they use this opportunity to showcase their writing—with all nine songs co-credited to both men—as well as their playing. "Resolutions," wisely selected as the opener, might be the catchiest song on the album. "Ninety Five" and the title track both possess a similar, steady eighth note groove—provided by drummer Quincy Davis—that's underscored by repetitive bass lines from Ugonna Okegwo. This combination helps lock things in beneath the soloists, acting as a grounding force. Pianist Rick Germanson has a killer descending run during his solo on the latter tune, but "Ninety Five" is the far more gratifying performance on the whole.

"Sap" begins with some musical questions being asked—with appropriate pauses after these lines—and Germanson's questions seem to be the most ominous in nature. Once the solos start, everybody—save Okegwo—gets a chance to let loose and nobody wastes the opportunity. "The Dog Days" is a molasses-slow ballad that makes brilliant use of the less-is-more approach. Fowser's solo starts off with an aching delivery and Germanson sticks to impressionistic statements, with some bluesy licks thrown in to spice things up. While Gillece's soloing seems a bit aimless on this one, he more than makes up for it on "Vigilance." Okegwo's slick bass work sets the tone for the piece, but Fowser and Gillece steal the attention away from him with their seemingly effortless run through the tricky rhythmic line they created. Once they make their way down this path, the solos begin and Gillece sounds phenomenal when he and Fowser begin to tangle their lines around one another.

"You" has a buoyant, uplifting sound that's wholly unique to this album. While Fowser and Gillece let the music breath and fly, Davis holds it in place with some heavy-handed playing. Okegwo's reputation as one of the most supportive bassists around is upheld on this record and, just when it appears the spotlight eludes him, he finally gets a chance to step out and solo on the album closer, "Another View." Much of this music has a timeless quality about it and little echoes of the giants listed above come through on Little Echo.

Track Listing: Resolutions; Ninety Five; Sap; The Dog Days; Vigilance; Little Echo; One Step At A Time; You; Another View.

Personnel: Ken Fowser: tenor saxophone; Behn Gillece: vibraphone; Rick Germanson: piano; Ugonna Okegwo: bass; Quincy Davis: drums.

Title: Little Echo | Year Released: 2010 | Record Label: Posi-Tone Records

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Live at Pyatt Hall CD/LP/Track Review Live at Pyatt Hall
by Jack Bowers
Published: January 23, 2018
Read Flying Heart CD/LP/Track Review Flying Heart
by Troy Dostert
Published: January 23, 2018
Read The 3Dom Factor: Live in Krakow CD/LP/Track Review The 3Dom Factor: Live in Krakow
by John Sharpe
Published: January 23, 2018
Read Solano Canyon CD/LP/Track Review Solano Canyon
by Glenn Astarita
Published: January 23, 2018
Read Lucas CD/LP/Track Review Lucas
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: January 22, 2018
Read In Paris: The Definitive ORTF Recording CD/LP/Track Review In Paris: The Definitive ORTF Recording
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: January 22, 2018
Read "Les Liaisons Dangereuses 1960" CD/LP/Track Review Les Liaisons Dangereuses 1960
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: June 8, 2017
Read "Wild Lines: Improvising Emily Dickinson" CD/LP/Track Review Wild Lines: Improvising Emily Dickinson
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 2, 2017
Read "Dream Within A Dream" CD/LP/Track Review Dream Within A Dream
by Ian Patterson
Published: June 22, 2017
Read "After The Rain" CD/LP/Track Review After The Rain
by Duncan Heining
Published: August 28, 2017
Read "Collider" CD/LP/Track Review Collider
by John Sharpe
Published: February 28, 2017
Read "The Joy of Being" CD/LP/Track Review The Joy of Being
by Budd Kopman
Published: February 1, 2017