Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

341

Ben Schachter: Omnibus

Victor L. Schermer By

Sign in to view read count
Saxophonist Ben Schachter is a jazz master, well known in the Philadelphia area and beyond. On this outstanding CD, he and his cohorts go beyond playing their instruments to creating works of art. Each piece forms a coherent composition where improvisations come close to sounding like the interpretation of a written score. Heartfelt yet profoundly intellectual, each consists of a fully developed means of expression while creating a mood—often a blue mood—all its own.



Schachter's opener, "Transparent," evokes a misterioso film noir sound, while much of the subsequent music defies classification. Schachter's "She Wept" fleshes out as a duet featuring Schachter with pianist Tom Lawton, evoking the feeling of listening to John Coltrane and McCoy Tyner on a ballad that combines with a sense of classical reverie, invoking rich modern expressions suggestive of Ravel and Poulenc.



"The Immortals: a Suite in Time"—three movements based respectively on Joe Henderson's "Inner Urge," John Coltrane's "Giant Steps," and Sonny Rollins' "Pent-Up House"—alludes to both the continuities and differences among these three legendary saxophonists, especially in the diverse ways they used rhythm, breaks and intervals in the flow of the sound. In the suite, three distinct meanings of "swing" emerge in Schachter's capable hands, with Leon Boykins displaying his brilliant and bouncing walking bass.



"Three-Ni: Variations on a Theme of Stravinsky" uses a 12-tone row from "Threni," one of the iconic Russian composer's later compositions, in a most unusual variation on a blues progression. In a feat of musical prestidigitation, in the end the piece plays out as an afterthought to a pleasant day, a coda to warmth and love. Lawton's pianism is stunningly beautiful, making rich use of pentatonic motifs that were the trademark of Debussy and other impressionist composers.



The remaining pieces on the album become more playful as they go along, in the multiple respects of fun, clever turns of phase, and complex musical phrasing. "Einstein Daydreamt," for instance, goes in and out of the diatonic scale the way Einstein's geometry bends space-time.



Omnibus combines the best features of a disciplined chamber music approach to the trio with elements of blues and swing, making for a true manifestation of the jazz idiom. With the capable assistance of Boykins, drummer Matt Scarano, and Lawton's supreme musical intelligence on two tracks, this CD successfully achieves a high level of musicality.


Track Listing: Transparent (For Steve Lacey); She Wept; The Immortals: a Suite in Time (Inner Urge; Giant Steps; Pent-Up House); Three-Ni: Variations on a Theme of Stravinsky; Think of One; Einstein Daydreamt; Bluesharp; Westward.

Personnel: Ben Schachter: saxophone; Leon Boykins: bass; Matt Scarano: drums; Tom Lawton: piano (2, 6).

Title: Omnibus | Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Ben-Jam Music

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Album Reviews
Profiles
Album Reviews
Read more articles
Omnibus

Omnibus

Ben-Jam Music
2008

buy
 

Nothingman

Ben-Jam Music
2004

buy
The Missing Beloved

The Missing Beloved

Ben-Jam Music
2002

buy
 

Trio of Many

Ben-Jam Music
2001

buy

Shop

Start your shopping here and you'll support All About Jazz in the process. Learn how.

Related Articles

Read Bulería Brooklyniana Album Reviews
Bulería Brooklyniana
By Dan Bilawsky
January 23, 2019
Read At The Hill Of James Magee Album Reviews
At The Hill Of James Magee
By Mark Corroto
January 23, 2019
Read Stomping Off From Greenwood Album Reviews
Stomping Off From Greenwood
By Mike Jurkovic
January 23, 2019
Read Live: The Rites of Spring Festival 2018 Album Reviews
Live: The Rites of Spring Festival 2018
By Roger Weisman
January 23, 2019
Read Runner in the Rain Album Reviews
Runner in the Rain
By Jack Bowers
January 22, 2019
Read Driftglass Album Reviews
Driftglass
By Chris May
January 22, 2019
Read Pure Magic Album Reviews
Pure Magic
By Mark Sullivan
January 22, 2019