Make a difference: Support jazz online

Support All About Jazz Your friends at All About Jazz are looking for readers to help back our website upgrade project. Of critical importance, this project will result in a vastly improved design across all devices and will make future All About Jazz projects much easier to implement. Click here to learn more about this project including donation rewards.

174

Ben Schachter and Sung/Unsung: Nothingman

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count
Philadelphia-area saxophonist Ben Schachter plays a wide range of reed instruments extremely well, although his primary voice is the tenor saxophone. He's been influenced by Sonny Rollins and John Coltrane, yet his burly tenor sound is clearly his own, and his approach is both original and personal. If the music on his self-produced Nothingman is any indication, Schachter deserves to be much better known.

Sung/Unsung is the name of Schachter's current band, which pivots on the interplay between Schachter and guitarist Jef Lee Johnson. Schachter plays powerful, take-no-prisoners tenor sax, as well as showing a fetchingly lyrical side on soprano. Johnson's approach runs the gamut from restrained chordal strumming to full-out rockish distortion, and always appropriately. For example, on the free piece "Aged," Schachter's tenor practically bursts at the seams with feeling, and Johnson's wailing guitar, while assertive, is also supportive, never distracting from Schachter's fiery improvising.

Schachter recasts John Coltrane's "Moment's Notice" in a rapid 6/4 tempo that also jumps into, then out of, a few bars of 4/4 in each chorus, and Schachter negotiates the tune's dizzying chord progressions with an explosive tenor solo that grabs the listener from the outset and never lets go. By contrast, Schachter's tenor invests his original ballad "'He So Beautiful': Emmett Wallace" with convincing warmth. On "Everyone's A Genius," Schachter and Johnson intertwine contrapuntally over a swinging rhythm. Two tunes unfold with off-kilter, hip funk beats, and "New Toy" features the leader's fine soprano sax work. The rhythm section is fully together. They are at the service of the music. They go where the music needs to go. With Nothingman , Ben Schachter has produced a top-shelf CD of modern jazz.


Track Listing: 1. Tribal Delusions 2. The Day the Happy Jazz Cried 3. Moment's Notice 4. Think, She Said (Melancholy) 5. Suddenly Sentient 6. Everyone's a Genius 7. He So Beautiful: Emmett Wallace 8. Queens Session Blues 9. New Toy 10. Nothingman 11. Aged

Personnel: Ben Schachter - reeds; Jef Lee Johnson - guitars; Matthew Parrish - bass; Craig McIver - drums

Title: Nothingman | Year Released: 2004 | Record Label: Ben-Jam Music

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Lux CD/LP/Track Review Lux
by Karl Ackermann
Published: January 20, 2018
Read Unleashed CD/LP/Track Review Unleashed
by John Sharpe
Published: January 20, 2018
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 20 CD/LP/Track Review 20
by Ian Patterson
Published: January 20, 2018
Read Roppongi CD/LP/Track Review Roppongi
by Mark Sullivan
Published: January 19, 2018
Read Is Life Long? CD/LP/Track Review Is Life Long?
by Mark Corroto
Published: January 19, 2018
Read "B3tles: A Soulful Tribute To The Fab Four" CD/LP/Track Review B3tles: A Soulful Tribute To The Fab Four
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: May 8, 2017
Read "Tales & Tones" CD/LP/Track Review Tales & Tones
by Geannine Reid
Published: January 21, 2017
Read "Nocturno" CD/LP/Track Review Nocturno
by Tyran Grillo
Published: March 9, 2017
Read "Like, Strange" CD/LP/Track Review Like, Strange
by Geno Thackara
Published: March 27, 2017
Read "Clean" CD/LP/Track Review Clean
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 15, 2017
Read "Welcome to Swingsville!" CD/LP/Track Review Welcome to Swingsville!
by Jack Bowers
Published: March 26, 2017