All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

306

Seamus Blake Quintet: Live At Smalls

Bruce Lindsay By

Sign in to view read count
Recorded at the Greenwich Village club on August 31st and September 1st 2009, Live At Smalls showcases the inventive sound of English-born, Canadian-raised and New York-based Seamus Blake. The tenor saxophonist's career to date includes membership in the Mingus Big Band, BANN and the Victor Lewis Quintet, as well as his own combos. Live At Smalls finds Blake leading a sharp and swinging quintet on a series of post-bop originals and a cover of "Stranger in Paradise."

The quintet on these dates also appears on Bellwether (Criss Cross, 2010). The musicians work well together, as an ensemble and also in the soloist/rhythm section format, always complementary in their approach. Blake is a strong player, capable of fast and fairly wild solos, without any danger of losing control. He's also able to craft a more romantic and reflective sound, as he shows on "Stranger in Paradise" or his own "Consequence."

Guitarist Lage Lund is also impressive, both for his precise and crystal clear picking and his fluid and melodic sound. Lund's solos on "Subterfuge" and "Amuse Bouche" are lovely examples of these qualities, bringing well-deserved whoops of pleasure from the crowd.

The tight and flexible rhythm section underpins Blake and Lund's lead work with flair. Bill Stewart and Matt Clohesy set up stylish rhythms on the ballads and the more up-tempo tunes alike. Stewart's drumming is at the front of the mix—occasionally too far to the front, to the detriment of Clohesy's bass sound. Pianist David Kikoski's spacious comping is always effective, while his solo work on "Consequence" and his interplay with Blake on "Stranger in Paradise" are lyrical and romantic.

Live At Smalls documents a quintet on top form in front of an appreciative crowd. Spike Wilner's production ensures that the live atmosphere infuses the entire album, giving a real sense of "jazz as it happens" in this classic venue.

Track Listing: Subterfuge; Amuse Bouche; Consequence; Stranger in Paradise; Fear of Rooming.

Personnel: Seamus Blake: tenor saxophone; Lage Lund: guitar; Dave Kikoski: piano; Matt Clohesy: bass: Bill Stewart: drums.

Title: Live At Smalls | Year Released: 2011

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Der Dichter Spricht CD/LP/Track Review
Der Dichter Spricht
by Troy Dostert
Published: April 26, 2018
Read Piano Works CD/LP/Track Review
Piano Works
by John Sharpe
Published: April 26, 2018
Read Throw Tomatoes CD/LP/Track Review
Throw Tomatoes
by Mark Corroto
Published: April 26, 2018
Read Reflections 2 CD/LP/Track Review
Reflections 2
by Glenn Astarita
Published: April 26, 2018
Read Making Other Arrangements CD/LP/Track Review
Making Other Arrangements
by Ian Patterson
Published: April 25, 2018
Read Charlie & Paul CD/LP/Track Review
Charlie & Paul
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 25, 2018
Read "Leap of Faith Orchestra - Possible Universes" CD/LP/Track Review Leap of Faith Orchestra - Possible Universes
by Karl Ackermann
Published: July 1, 2017
Read "Calvins Toboggan" CD/LP/Track Review Calvins Toboggan
by Matthew Aquiline
Published: April 27, 2017
Read "Polygon" CD/LP/Track Review Polygon
by Pascal-Denis Lussier
Published: May 21, 2017
Read "Atlantic Bridge" CD/LP/Track Review Atlantic Bridge
by Roger Farbey
Published: September 12, 2017
Read "I Think I'm Going To Eat Dessert" CD/LP/Track Review I Think I'm Going To Eat Dessert
by Jerome Wilson
Published: January 20, 2018
Read "Arise" CD/LP/Track Review Arise
by Phil Barnes
Published: November 10, 2017