298

Bridge Quartet: Night

Dan McClenaghan By

Sign in to view read count
Bridge Quartet: Night For jazz fans with some historical listening under their belts, the word "Bridge" will bring to mind Sonny Rollins' album, The Bridge (Bluebird/RCA, 1962), a set that Rollins released after a three-year hiatus, and changed the saxophonist's musical trajectory from Ornette Coleman-influenced freedom to a more traditional mainstream, but still adventurous, sound.

The Bridge Quartet works very much in that Rollins-esque, post-Bridge mode. It's Phil Dwyer's full-bodied saxophone in front of an inspired rhythm team, featuring pianist Darrell Grant, bassist Tom Wakeling, and drummer Alan Jones.

The group's previous set, Day (Origin Records, 2008), was a studio affair, recorded in the same 36-hour period as Night, which showcases the ensemble in a live setting. The feeling on both sets is much the same, with Night, as one would expect of a live recording, featuring the tunes in a more stretched out mode, with more room for soloing all around.

Much like Rollins, the Bridge Quartet takes on familiar melodies with a fiery gusto, beginning with the buoyant 12-minute take on the Lerner and Lowe gem, "Wouldn't It Be Loverly," moving into an energized and freewheeling rendition of "Green Dolphin Street," with Dwyer wrapping up the roll down that familiar avenue in a "Surrey With the Fringe on the Top."

"A Face Like Yours" opens with Darrell Grant's gorgeously supple piano sound before Dwyer blows in with a yearning feeling. It's 11 minutes-plus of heart-rendering, breathtaking beauty in the middle of a mostly high octane affair that proves the Bridge Quartet has its own sweet way with a ballad.

"Strode Rode," from the pen of Sonny Rollins, blasts full speed ahead, full of muscle and grit, and Billy Strayhorn's "Isfahan" steps lightly, in pretty and contemplative fashion.

The set closes with "Bemsha Swing," one of Thelonious Monk's most brilliant tunes. It opens on a smooth rolling rhythm before the saxophone slices in. Pianist Grant gets a lot of space, and he shines in it, smoothing out the Monk-ian angles and taking things into a dance groove before Dwyer shifts things into a freer gear, and addresses the sharp corners of Sonny Rollins' "East Broadway Rundown," from the 1966 Impulse! Records set of the same name, along the way, bringing an especially fine jazz set to a close.


Track Listing: Wouldn't It Be Loverly; Green Dolphin Street; A Face Like Yours; Strode Rode; Isfahan; Bemsha Swing.

Personnel: Phil Dwyer: saxophone; Darrell Grant: piano; Tom Wakling: bass; Alan Jones: drums.

Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: Origin Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read Acceptance CD/LP/Track Review Acceptance
by Tyran Grillo
Published: February 26, 2017
Read The Wild CD/LP/Track Review The Wild
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 26, 2017
Read This Is Nate Najar CD/LP/Track Review This Is Nate Najar
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 26, 2017
Read Joy Comes Back CD/LP/Track Review Joy Comes Back
by James Nadal
Published: February 26, 2017
Read Apocalypse CD/LP/Track Review Apocalypse
by Julian Derry
Published: February 26, 2017
Read The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door CD/LP/Track Review The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 25, 2017
Read "Unspoken" CD/LP/Track Review Unspoken
by Andrew Luhn
Published: October 9, 2016
Read "I Just Want to Get Paid!" CD/LP/Track Review I Just Want to Get Paid!
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 15, 2016
Read "When You Wish Upon a Star" CD/LP/Track Review When You Wish Upon a Star
by Ian Patterson
Published: April 19, 2016
Read "Up Go We" CD/LP/Track Review Up Go We
by Budd Kopman
Published: August 4, 2016
Read "On Hollywood Boulevard" CD/LP/Track Review On Hollywood Boulevard
by Sacha O'Grady
Published: December 6, 2016
Read "Potsdamer Platz" CD/LP/Track Review Potsdamer Platz
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: February 3, 2017

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: Jazz Near You | GET IT  

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!