101

Harvie S & Eye Contact: New Beginning

Jack Bowers By

Sign in to view read count
Bassist Harvie S (formerly Harvie Swartz) has made a New Beginning by producing an album that uses a variety of Latin rhythms to enliven what is essentially the sort of smooth Jazz that one must endure on so many radio stations these days. That's not to say there's no substance here; the ensemble plays well together, and Harvie's tunes (he wrote all of them except "African Heartbeat") are not devoid of charm or interest. But everything is scrupulously middle-of-the-road and unadventurous, in spite of guest appearances by tenor saxophonist Michael Brecker ("New Beginning," "From the Ashes"), trumpeter Ray Vega ("Luna Romantica," "From the Ashes") and guitarist Haru Takauchi ("Mothership"). As one would expect from any album with a Latin substructure, percussionist Renato Thoms plays an important role, and he and drummer Adam Weber keep the rhythm percolating while Harvie's resonant bass lends the music its unwavering pulse. Harvie's "Bright Moment" is especially enticing, thanks in part to excellent work by Thoms and pianist Daniel Kelly. The steady "Heartbeat" was written by violinist Gregor Huebner who adds a brief but amiable solo, although he's not listed as one of the performers on that particular track. "Mothership" marks the most radical departure from the ordinary, with a number of special effects undergirding its brash rhythmic makeup while Huebner and guitarists Takauchi and Bruce Arnold provide some further ethereal touches. This is Eye Contact's second CD; the first, Havana Mañana, we're told in the liner notes, received "rave reviews." And so might this one, as anyone's response to music is, after all, a matter of opinion, and one listener's trash may be another's treasure. To our ear, New Beginning lies somewhere in between; others must appraise its worth by listening for themselves.

Contact: www.cdbaby.com; www.amazon.com; www.mp3.com/Harvie S


Track Listing: New Beginning; En la Batalla; Chump Change; Luna Romantica; African Heartbeat; A Bright Moment; From the Ashes; Tres Mundos; Mothership (60:48).

Personnel: Harvie S, acoustic bass; Bruce Arnold, guitar; Daniel Kelly, piano; Adam Weber, drums; Renato Thoms, percussion; Gregor Huebner (3, 4, 5, 9), violin. Special guests ? Michael Brecker (1, 7), tenor sax; Ray Vega (4, 7), trumpet; Haru Takauchi (9), guitar.

Year Released: 2002 | Record Label: Ondine | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read Akua's Dance CD/LP/Track Review Akua's Dance
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Daylight Ghosts CD/LP/Track Review Daylight Ghosts
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Live at PafA CD/LP/Track Review Live at PafA
by Matthew Aquiline
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Ocean of Storms CD/LP/Track Review Ocean of Storms
by Troy Dostert
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Transparent Water CD/LP/Track Review Transparent Water
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 20, 2017
Read Billows Of Blue CD/LP/Track Review Billows Of Blue
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 20, 2017
Read "The Eastcote Studios Session" CD/LP/Track Review The Eastcote Studios Session
by John Eyles
Published: November 30, 2016
Read "Heavy Feel" CD/LP/Track Review Heavy Feel
by Doug Collette
Published: May 21, 2016
Read "Factory Girl" CD/LP/Track Review Factory Girl
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: May 22, 2016
Read "Néo" CD/LP/Track Review Néo
by James Nadal
Published: April 13, 2016
Read "Bridges From The East" CD/LP/Track Review Bridges From The East
by Geannine Reid
Published: June 29, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!