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.

274

Peter Kenagy: Little Machines

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count
Peter Kenagy is a young trumpeter and composer, born in Seattle and based in Boston, who already has a lot to say on his first album. His original compositions explore areas that most jazz musicians don't seem drawn to. His tunes, like the relaxed "Nile," are spacious, letting in air and light. He also looks at a couple of vintage standards, cleverly recasting them.

"Dog Story" is one of the most satisfying performances here. Its theme is hip, the kind that pleasantly nestles in your ear. Its structure and open form somewhat recall Ornette Coleman, although the tempo change in the middle is pure Kenagy, enabling him to sandwich his free trumpet musings between hard-swinging saxophone solos. Then there's "AYG...," a recasting of "After You've Gone" into a meandering, stuttering bolero. "Whisps" is actually "Whispering," another classic standard. With those shifting accents on the head and solid, swinging solos, "Whisps" could be a "Groovin' High" for the 21st Century.

Of course, Little Machines is a lot more than just a series of unusually clever compositions and arrangements. It's also the thoughtful improvising by the horns. Kenagy seems less interested in bravura displays of chops than most younger players. He likes to play melodies, although always imbued with swing and considerable harmonic daring. He reminds me of both Tom Harrell and Don Cherry.

At times alto saxophonist Jeremy Udden sounds like he wants to play Ornette Coleman to Kenagy's Cherry. Hear, for example, his tonal manipulations on "Nile" or his jabbing lines on "Dog Story." Tenor saxophonist Jason Hunter is solid, with a clean, centered tone. While guitarist Adam Larrabee only solos once, his reverb-drenched comps are essential to this band's spacious sound. And finally, the excellent rhythm section adroitly negotiates everything its leader writes, giving this challenging music an added air of delight and accessibility.


Track Listing: Nile; Dog Story; AYG; Little Machines; Hungary; Disappearing Man; Whisps

Personnel: Peter Kenagy (trumpet), Jason Hunter (tenor saxophone), Jeremy Udden (alto saxophone), Adam Larrabee (guitar), Rick McLaughlin (bass), Jorge Perez-Albela (drums)

Title: Little Machines | Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Fresh Sound New Talent

Tags

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 "Onward" CD/LP/Track Review Onward
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: May 2, 2017
Read "Radioactive Landscapes EP" CD/LP/Track Review Radioactive Landscapes EP
by Troy Dostert
Published: April 24, 2017
Read "Aladdin's Dream" CD/LP/Track Review Aladdin's Dream
by Ian Patterson
Published: December 12, 2017
Read "Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1" CD/LP/Track Review Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 24, 2017
Read "Contra la indecision" CD/LP/Track Review Contra la indecision
by Karl Ackermann
Published: January 10, 2018
Read "Time Being" CD/LP/Track Review Time Being
by Geno Thackara
Published: October 25, 2017