1

Ryan Keberle + Catharsis: Music Is Emotion

Dan Bilawsky By

Sign in to view read count
Ryan Keberle + Catharsis: Music Is Emotion Music can be defined, analyzed and categorized, but those formal processes do little to help demystify the effect it can have on people. That's because music's power isn't directly related to the science behind the sound; music truly makes its mark through emotional connectivity, and trombonist Ryan Keberle is keenly aware of this.

In just over a decade, Keberle has become one of the most in-demand trombonists on the scene, and he's done so by using his considerable technique to communicate with, rather than play at, the people who encounter his horn. Keberle keeps wide-ranging company, working with everybody from Latin luminary Ivan Lins to compositional queen Maria Schneider to pop/R&B superstar Alicia Keys, but his raison d'être isn't diversification; he's all about touching the soul through sound means.

Keberle relied on a rich, multihued brass mixture and a firm rhythmic foundation on his earlier albums—Double Quartet (Alternate Side, 2007) and Heavy Dreaming (Alternate Side, 2010)—but he abandons that strategy here. In forming Catharsis, a piano-less quartet with two horns, bass and drums, Keberle left his self-admitted comfort zone, but it did him some good; this already-stellar artist reaches a new artistic peak with Music Is Emotion.

This outfit gets down to the business of direct interfacing from the get-go and they do a damn good job of it. Keberle's full-bodied horn is never short of spectacular, as he explores the remote recesses of his own work, and trumpeter Mike Rodriguez is part angel and part devil, alternately warming the soul and scorching the earth. The rhythm team of bassist Jorge Roeder and drummer Eric Doob collaborate in an upfront manner, but they also manage to make everything feel just right on the bottom end.

The Beatles and indie rock artists influence Keberle's outlook, but the blues form—and feeling—is of greater importance in his overall vision. Catharsis communes with the blues on more than one occasion, using this tried-and-true format as a foundation for its explorations. Keberle's "Big Kick Blues" goes beyond the norm, sneaking a peak into outward bound territory, while Art Farmer's "Blueport" remains true to its central tenet. Both of these numbers are good, but "Blues In Orbit" is even better. The cool-and-the-raunchy are brilliantly balanced on this slow, smoldering treat. While it's tempting to call this the standout track on the album, it's too close to call that particular race; virtually every number, from the intrigue-laced, melodically appealing "Carbon Neutral" to the absorbing "Djohariah," is in the running.

Track Listing: Big Kick Blues; Need Some Time; Carbon Neutral; Nowhere To Go, Nothing To See; Julia; Blues In Orbit; Key Adjustment; The Show Must Go On; Djohariah; Blueport.

Personnel: Ryan Keberle: trombone; Mike Rodriguez: trumpet; Jorge Roeder: bass; Eric Doob: drums; Scott Robinson:

Year Released: 2013 | Record Label: Alternate Side Records


Shop

More Articles

Read The Big Wig CD/LP/Track Review The Big Wig
by Ian Patterson
Published: May 24, 2017
Read The Dreamer Is the Dream CD/LP/Track Review The Dreamer Is the Dream
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 24, 2017
Read Bill Evans – Another Time: The Hilversum Concert CD/LP/Track Review Bill Evans – Another Time: The Hilversum Concert
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: May 24, 2017
Read The Failure of Words CD/LP/Track Review The Failure of Words
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 24, 2017
Read Groove Dreams CD/LP/Track Review Groove Dreams
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: May 23, 2017
Read Kami Fusen CD/LP/Track Review Kami Fusen
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 23, 2017
Read "Chronosome" CD/LP/Track Review Chronosome
by Budd Kopman
Published: November 24, 2016
Read "Kami Fusen" CD/LP/Track Review Kami Fusen
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 23, 2017
Read "Eastern Smiles" CD/LP/Track Review Eastern Smiles
by Ian Patterson
Published: August 21, 2016
Read "Beatbox Sax" CD/LP/Track Review Beatbox Sax
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: September 18, 2016
Read "The Book of Transfigurations" CD/LP/Track Review The Book of Transfigurations
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: May 8, 2017
Read "AMa AZa LaNdO" CD/LP/Track Review AMa AZa LaNdO
by Geno Thackara
Published: August 23, 2016
comments powered by Disqus

Why wait?

Support All About Jazz and we'll deliver exclusive content, hide ads, hide slide-outs, and provide read access to our future articles.

Buy it!