Articles | Popular | Future

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mostly Other People Do The Killing: Paint

Read "Paint" reviewed by Jerome Wilson

Mostly Other People Do The Killing have released their second CD of 2017 and, in keeping with the group's unpredictability, it's a bit of a curve ball. Whereas on previous releases they've ranged in size from a quartet to a septet, this time they've cut themselves down to a simple piano trio. Other than that, it's business as usual. Bassist Moppa Elliott's original compositions are still named for towns in Pennsylvania (which this time all include colors in their names), ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Paint

Read "Paint" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

No sooner had Mostly Other People Do the Killing expanded to a septet with Loafer's Hollow (Hot Cup Records, 2017) than they shrink to their smallest formation to date with the trio release Paint. Founding member, bassist, and composer Moppa Elliott is joined by pianist Ron Stabinsky and drummer Kevin Shea. Trumpeter Peter Evans had departed the group before its 2015 Mauch Chunk album and now without Jon Irabagon's alto saxophone in the lineup, the sound takes a very different ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Loafer's Hollow

Read "Loafer's Hollow" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

The expanded, septet version of Mostly Other People Do The Killing takes on more pre-bebop era jazz. The previous septet outing Red Hot (Hot Cup, 2013) had focused on jazz and blues recordings of the 1920s -30s; this one adds the music of the swing era to the mix. One of the defining changes in the swing era was the banjo giving way to guitar in the rhythm section--with banjoist Brandon Seabrook in the band, the earlier sound is maintained, ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Loafer's Hollow

Read "Loafer's Hollow" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Blowing up Mostly Other People Do the Killing from its core quartet to a septet may seem like an invitation to dance on the musical third rail. The group that has always straddled the broad and fuzzy line between tradition and chaotic improvisation, has nevertheless managed that process with a mixture of sophistication, revelation and unbridled enthusiasm. Loafer's Hollow is a surprising entry to their catalog of one-dozen releases.MOPDtK founding member (and primary composer), bassist Moppa Elliott, saxophonist ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Mostly Other People Do the Killing at the Philadelphia Art Alliance

Read "Mostly Other People Do the Killing at the Philadelphia Art Alliance" reviewed by Asher Wolf

Mostly Other People Do the Killing Philadelphia Art AlliancePhiladelphia, PA February 15, 2016 “If mostly other people do the killing I guess that means it's sometimes us," replied bassist Moppa Elliot in response to the inevitable question about the name of his band. Though many consider Mostly Other People Do the Killing (MOPDtK) one of the most original and talented ensembles of their generation, others would argue that jazz itself is the object ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Mauch Chunk

Read "Mauch Chunk" reviewed by Troy Collins

Any concerns that a personnel change would affect the mercurial disposition of the “terrorist bebop band" known as Mostly Other People Do the Killing have been confirmed as unfounded by Mauch Chunk, the wily ensemble's eighth studio recording for Hot Cup Records. Trumpeter Peter Evans, an original member since the core quartet's founding in 2003, left after the release of last year's Blue--a perplexingly pointless note-for-note remake of Miles Davis' iconic Kind of Blue (Columbia, 1959). Evans' ostensible replacement, pianist ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Mauch Chunk

Read "Mauch Chunk" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

Mostly Other People Do the Killing, the bad boys of jazz, don't quite turn in a straight ahead hard bop album with Mauch Chunk, but it's as close as they are likely to get. The new quartet has pianist Ron Stabinsky in place of longtime trumpeter Peter Evans--which seems to ground the group sound--and there's less obvious classic jazz deconstruction and quotation than normal. Saxophonist Jon Irabagon stays on alto for the entire session, something he has not done in ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Mauch Chunk

Read "Mauch Chunk" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

If ever a jazz group defied labeling, it is Mostly Other People Do the Killing (MOPDtK). With their self-titled debut (Hot Cup Records, 2004), the group had demonstrated a wildly engrossing pastiche encompassing influences as diverse as Ornette Coleman and traditional New Orleans swing. MOPDtK was founded by bassist Moppa Elliott and trumpeter Peter Evans who met in the late 90s as students of the Oberlin Conservatory of Music in Ohio. When the two relocated to New York, saxophonist Jon ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Blue

Read "Blue" reviewed by Mark Corroto

Imagine coming home from work to find the furniture in your house was moved and say, your tooth brush is now on the other side of the bathroom sink. A few inches here, and a few inches there. Would you notice? Maybe yes, if you had been gone just a day. What happens in the same scenario if you returned after a month's vacation. You may never discern the change. Now, consider Mostly Other People Do The Killing's ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Red Hot!

Read "Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Red Hot!" reviewed by Dave Wayne

I've been too busy enjoying the music of Mostly Other People Do The Killing (MOPTDK) to realize how controversial they've become. If you doubt their ability to rile the jazz world, all you have to do is post one of their videos on your Facebook page and wait for the ensuing kerfuffle to begin. The core band is comprised of four virtuoso instrumentalists, free-spirits who think nothing of hopping from honest-to-god punk rock, to free improv, to hard bop, to ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Red Hot

Read "Red Hot" reviewed by John Sharpe

Having been simultaneously inspired by and ironic about '80s smooth jazz on the excellent Slippery Rock (Hot Cup Records, 2013), Mostly Other People Do the Killing delve back further into history to explore pre-War genres on Red Hot. It's a tall order for a foursome, so bassist and leader Moppa Elliott has added Brandon Seabrook on banjo, Ron Stabinsky on piano and David Taylor on bass trombone to fully exploit the possibilities inherent in post New Orleans modes. Though the ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mostly Other People Do the Killing: Slippery Rock

Read "Slippery Rock" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

Strangely enough, bandleader and bassist Moppa Elliot derived inspiration for his compositions on Slippery Rock from smooth jazz albums of the late 1970s and '80s. However, it's more like smooth jazz under siege; with resonating rhythms, scorching and wily horns choruses, the program offers subliminal detections of commercial jazz fare as the band often breaks into complex and peppery free form jaunts. MOPDtK acutely tears down most of the melodic content, only to reassemble it into fractured and largely improvised ...