352

Jason Adasiewicz: Rolldown

Troy Collins By

Sign in to view read count
Jason Adasiewicz: Rolldown Former indie rock drummer turned jazz vibraphonist, Jason Adasiewicz has slowly but surely made his mark on the vibrant Chicago jazz scene. With musical roots in the alt-country circuit, the former drummer for Pinetop Seven and singer Edith Frost is now a regular sideman to Fred Lonberg-Holm, Rob Mazurek, Nicole Mitchell, Mike Reed and Ken Vandermark.

The self-titled debut of his Rolldown ensemble shares more than a passing similarity to the classic mid-60s Blue Note sessions of such luminaries as Eric Dolphy, Bobby Hutcherson and Jackie McLean. The shadow of Dolphy's landmark album Out To Lunch (Blue Note, 1964) hangs heavy over the date; Adasiewicz and company offer subtle variations on the innovative album's distinctive angular themes and fractured rhythms.

Rolldown features some of Chicago's most outstanding young improvisers, who regularly play together in a variety of ensembles and line-ups. Navigating Adasiewicz's jagged themes, Aram Shelton's acerbic alto and supple clarinet trades thorny lines with Josh Berman's brazen cornet, forming an expressive front line. Bassist Jason Roebke and drummer Frank Rosaly, long standing rhythm section partners, are scene regulars with an intuitive rapport, able to lend structural stability to the most abstract of grooves.

An adherent of the four-mallet style pioneered by Gary Burton, Adasiewicz is a quicksilver performer whose knotty phrases cascade with ricocheting intensity. His writing eschews conventional chord changes and rhythmic pulses, preferring improvised harmonies and elastic tempos.

"Good Looking Android," "Small Potatoes," "Creep" and "Little Screw" all invoke the atmospheric tension of Dolphy's 1964 masterpiece, complete with gnarled themes, intervallic solos and metrically abstruse rhythms. Unconventional arrangements, expansive dynamics and unpredictable shifts in rhythm prevent these tunes from settling into simulacrums of the past.

Expanding well beyond the Blue Note vibe, the unsettled chamber-esque ballad "Valerie" showcases Shelton's dulcet clarinet work, while "Nearby" and "Gather" both grow slowly from pensive ruminations into languorous epics. "Nearby" expands into a flurry of discordant activity reminiscent of the Art Ensemble of Chicago at their most lyrically effusive.

A promising debut, Rolldown is the 14th album in 482 Music's document Chicago series, and reveals Adasiewicz to be a new voice worthy of attention in that fertile scene.


Track Listing: Good Looking Android; Small Potatoes; Valerie; Creep; Nearby; Little Screw; Gather.

Personnel: Jason Adasiewicz: vibraphone; Josh Berman: cornet; Aram Shelton: alto saxophone and clarinet; Jason Roebke: bass; Frank Rosaly: drums.

Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: 482 Music | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

  • Hide
    Hide
    Jason Adasiewicz's Rolldown
    Varmint
CD/LP/Track Review
Live Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Bobby Hutcherson Bobby Hutcherson
vibraphone
Henry Grimes Henry Grimes
bass, acoustic
James Zollar James Zollar
trumpet
Mike Reed Mike Reed
drums
Don Thompson Don Thompson
multi-instrumentalist
Bob Lark Bob Lark
trumpet
Orbert Davis Orbert Davis
trumpet
Jamie Fox Jamie Fox
guitar
Diego Rivera Diego Rivera
saxophone
Mark Buselli Mark Buselli
trumpet

More Articles

Read June CD/LP/Track Review June
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 19, 2017
Read The Final Concert CD/LP/Track Review The Final Concert
by John Sharpe
Published: February 19, 2017
Read Desire & Freedom CD/LP/Track Review Desire & Freedom
by Glenn Astarita
Published: February 19, 2017
Read On Hollywood Boulevard CD/LP/Track Review On Hollywood Boulevard
by Budd Kopman
Published: February 19, 2017
Read The Motorman's Son CD/LP/Track Review The Motorman's Son
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 18, 2017
Read "Samba Gostoso" CD/LP/Track Review Samba Gostoso
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: July 6, 2016
Read "Day By Day" CD/LP/Track Review Day By Day
by Rob Rosenblum
Published: January 16, 2017
Read "Special Kay!" CD/LP/Track Review Special Kay!
by Jack Bowers
Published: May 18, 2016
Read "TriAngular Bent" CD/LP/Track Review TriAngular Bent
by Dave Wayne
Published: September 22, 2016
Read "Loafer's Hollow" CD/LP/Track Review Loafer's Hollow
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 10, 2017
Read "A Good Time Was Had By All" CD/LP/Track Review A Good Time Was Had By All
by Jack Bowers
Published: July 25, 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!

Buy it!