93

Alexander McCabe: Quiz

Bruce Lindsay By

Sign in to view read count
Alexander McCabe: Quiz Quiz, alto saxophonist Alexander McCabe's second album as leader, appears five years after his previous release, The Round (Wamco Music, 2005). McCabe has been a member of Ray Charles' Orchestra and ska band Mephiskapheles, as well as working with jazz greats like Joe Henderson and Ray Brown. He cites tenor giants Ben Webster, John Coltrane and Sonny Rollins as influences, but it's altoists like Charlie Parker and Eric Dolphy that impact most clearly on his sound.

The overall style of the music is straight-ahead, although the tunes occasionally show a more overtly bebop influence. This is particularly the case on "Lonnegan" and "Kalido." Both tunes were recorded a year earlier than the rest of the album and feature Gregory Hutchinson on drums. Hutchinson's tight and percussive drumming is a key feature of "Lonnegan," a driving blues tune centered on McCabe's hard-edged alto playing.

McCabe contributes five original compositions. "Weezie's Waltz," which actually moves between 3/4 and 5/4 time, is a bright, cheerful tune that features some light and fluid piano from Uri Caine. "St. Pat" is the most intriguing of the five: a freer sounding tune than the rest of the album it features McCabe and Caine at their most inventive while Rudy Royston's drumming creates a real sense of movement and intensity.

The two covers—"Good Morning Heartache" and "How Little We Know"—are lovely, insistent, tunes. McCabe's version of "Good Morning Heartache" is an extended arrangement with a Bossa Nova feel that centers on McCabe's crisply-toned alto solo and Caine's contrastingly rich chordal playing. Bassist Ugonna Okegwo, who also played on The Round, adds his own solo in the closing minutes—it's a fat, rounded, sound that adds another dimension to the tune.

The sound on Quiz gives the album a real sense of a live club performance, even though all the tracks are studio recordings. With the possible exception of "St. Pat" McCabe's own compositions are pleasant rather than outstanding, but his playing is stylish and sympathetic. McCabe's band mates are talented musicians as well, and the ensemble ensures that Quiz is always enjoyable.


Track Listing: Weezie's Waltz; Lonnegan; Kalido; Quiz; Good Morning Heartache; St. Pat; How Little We Know.

Personnel: Alexander McCabe: alto saxophone; Uri Caine: piano; Ugonna Okegwo: bass; Rudy Royston: drums; Greg Hutchinson: drums (2, 3).

Year Released: 2010 | Record Label: Consolidated Artists Productions


Shop

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
John Coltrane John Coltrane
saxophone
Charlie Parker Charlie Parker
sax, alto
McCoy Tyner McCoy Tyner
piano
David Binney David Binney
saxophone
David Sanborn David Sanborn
saxophone
James Moody James Moody
reeds
Steve Lacy Steve Lacy
sax, soprano
Sonny Fortune Sonny Fortune
sax, alto
Mike Longo Mike Longo
piano
Marcus Strickland Marcus Strickland
saxophone
Tim Armacost Tim Armacost
saxophone

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 "Proximity" CD/LP/Track Review Proximity
by Glenn Astarita
Published: August 30, 2016
Read "In Denmark 1959-1960" CD/LP/Track Review In Denmark 1959-1960
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: June 18, 2016
Read "Zentuary" CD/LP/Track Review Zentuary
by John Kelman
Published: December 25, 2016
Read "Live At Edgefest" CD/LP/Track Review Live At Edgefest
by John Sharpe
Published: April 28, 2016
Read "Sunday Bolero" CD/LP/Track Review Sunday Bolero
by James Nadal
Published: June 15, 2016
Read "Handel:  Complete Harpsichord Music" CD/LP/Track Review Handel: Complete Harpsichord Music
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 2, 2016

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!