786

Corey Christiansen: Roll With It

C. Michael Bailey By

Sign in to view read count
Corey Christiansen: Roll With It

If jazz is America's soundtrack, periodically updated by tonal seismic shifts, then Corey Christiansen's third release, Roll With It, is one such shift. Imagine a Grant Green-Jimmy Smith-Stanley Turrentine 1960s triumvirate (had one existed) buffed to an early 21st Century digital sheen, greasy easy on the pork fat, hard on the omega-3s and what you get is guitarist Corey Christiansen's soul-jazz world view.



Debuting on Origin Records with Roll With It, Christiansen has the benefit of stablemate drummer Matt Jorgensen as well as Christiansen associates tenor saxophonist David Halliday and organist Pat Bianchi to fill this recording out. The results are as fresh as Johnny Walker Green Label just opened and as familiar as the last glass poured.



Christiansen sets the pace with the funk-infested, riff-propelling momentum of the opening "Your Way." Christiansen and Halliday spar in the head, skating over Bianchi and Jorgensen's nuclear groove. The viral hook of the head has a long half-life, banging those soul-jazz receptors so hard that the melody stays with the listener even in sleep.



Now that's music successfully delivered.



Christiansen's tone is slightly distorted and situated in a reverb center. This gives him a punchy, echoed sound, recalling the soundtracks of '70s cop procedurals on television, with updated harmonic and melodic themes. While that may sound retro, the guitarist's melodic approach is not. Christiansen spins complex melodies that never lose their inherent funk.



"Your Way" is just the introduction to a solid collection of Christiansen's compositions, where the composer shows considerable chops in never allowing his creations to disintergrate into a monotonous 12-bar blues-fest. For sure, the blues is ever present on Roll With It. But it is transformed, funkified; Version 2.0, made with modified structures still orbiting the divine pentatonic.



Christiansen even pulls out that blues workhorse, the slide guitar, for a beautifully strange back-to-the-future romp on "Side Ways." The disc closes with the superb "Half Pay," where Christiansen's blues chops shine in a most unusual, swinging and funky piece. Corey Christiansen has arrived with one of the most satisfying soul-jazz recordings of the year.

Track Listing: Your Way; I'll Just Wait; Roll With It; Steele; Kaiya's Dance; Sideways; Half Pay.

Personnel: Corey Christiansen: guitar; David Halliday: tenor saxophone; Pat Bianchi: Hammond B-3 organ; Matt Jorgensen: drums.

Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Origin Records | Style: Funk/Groove


Shop

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles

More Articles

Read Petite Afrique CD/LP/Track Review Petite Afrique
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Organ Monk, The Breathe Suite CD/LP/Track Review Organ Monk, The Breathe Suite
by Roger Farbey
Published: April 29, 2017
Read The Wild CD/LP/Track Review The Wild
by Mark Sullivan
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Soul Garden CD/LP/Track Review Soul Garden
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 29, 2017
Read The Authorized Bang Collection CD/LP/Track Review The Authorized Bang Collection
by Doug Collette
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Cross My Palm With Silver CD/LP/Track Review Cross My Palm With Silver
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 28, 2017
Read "Wede Harer Guzo" CD/LP/Track Review Wede Harer Guzo
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: May 28, 2016
Read "Flowers" CD/LP/Track Review Flowers
by John Sharpe
Published: November 23, 2016
Read "Illuminations" CD/LP/Track Review Illuminations
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 24, 2016
Read "Sharpener" CD/LP/Track Review Sharpener
by Nick Davies
Published: December 21, 2016
Read "Cool" CD/LP/Track Review Cool
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: November 21, 2016
Read "Isang" CD/LP/Track Review Isang
by Roger Farbey
Published: December 24, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM RECORDS | BUY NOW  

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!