The versatile Frank Butrey lends a psychedelic rock-infused flavor to the jazz repertoire in Malicious Delicious. The Philadelphia-based guitarist displays his wares through these original compositions (some co-written), performed with some of his favorite musicians including members of bassist Warren Oree's Arpeggio Jazz Ensemble (Butrey is a working member), who flavor the tracks in various ways. Acknowledging the influence of rockers Jimi Hendrix and Carlos Santana, along with Chick Corea and Pat Martino from the jazz inner circles, Butrey whips up a series of intense and sometimes very personal statements that, as the title implies, shake things up and, at times, provide a rich taste of more sensitive playing.
While Butrey has all the virtuosity and resilience of a fine jazz guitarist, this is not an album for easy listening. The overall guitar sound is biting and sharp, at times becoming boisterous and obstreperous, echoing Pink Floyd and other groups from the psychedelic era. There are forays into various moods, from the distressing "Malicious Delicious Blues" to the laidback "Acoustic Afternoons" and everything in between.
Jazz guitarists will find Butrey's rich improvisational capabilities of great interest. He likes to play with possibilities and demonstrates rich motivic and chordal development. There is an ingenuity repeatedly occurring as he and his cohorts try on new "skins" in chameleon-like adaptations. After several listens, the head spins from exposure to the myriad musical changes that, in turn, evoke changes in the psyche. In that sense, the music is transformational, provoking changes in the sense of self much like a psychedelic drug.
This album will appeal to those who appreciate emotion-driven interpretations with a hard-rock accent and a touch of jazz fusion. Those seeking a straight-ahead fine arts guitar sound, however, had better look elsewhere.
Track Listing: Boisterous Voiceferous; Malicious Delicious Blues; Acoustic Afternoon; This End Up; Toast With A Ghost; Dimitri, Birks and Dewey; Little Workshops; Dodges, Denials and Delays; Niece and Nephews.
Personnel: Frank Butrey: electric and acoustic nylon string guitars; Tony "Stickman" Wyatt: drums (1, 2, 4, 5, 8); Clifton Kellem: acoustic and electric basses; (1, 2, 4, 5); Tom Lowery: percussion (3, 5); Joe Ruscitto: percussion (3); Leonard "Hub" Hubbard: electric bass (8); The Arpeggio Jazz Ensemble (6): Warren Oree: acoustic bass; Umar Raheem: soprano sax; Greg "Ju Ju" Jones: drums; Doug "Pablo" Edwards: percussion..
First time I met Lee Konitz, my mentor who completely changed my life, in 1992. He was giving a masterclass at the Cologne Conservatory (Germany) where I was a freshmen (with playing experience around three years total)
First time I met Lee Konitz, my mentor who completely changed my life, in 1992. He was giving a masterclass at the Cologne Conservatory (Germany) where I was a freshmen (with playing experience around three years total). He saw an alto sax on my neck and said: Hey, how about you there, would you like to play something for us? I played a piece with the piano. OK, said Lee, how about you play something unaccompanied? Oh yeah! I was deep into transcribing Sonny Stitt and pretty much into playing as fast as possible as many right notes as possible. So I played Oleo in about 300 beats per minute and was very proud of myself. Lee was tapping his foot all the way through. Hmm, he said, that was in time and all that... (I thought - yeah, of course, haha!) and then he said, You've got a lot of quantity, how about quality? It took me 15 years to realize what he meant.