297

Native Soul: Rough Jazz

Ivana Ng By

Sign in to view read count
Native Soul: Rough Jazz Native Soul's debut album, Rough Jazz, can be viewed as an evolution from prudent bebop to hard bop with more soulful, daring rhythms.

On the first half of the record, Peter Brainin's tenor's blithe timbre provides melodies that are often overpowering; pianist (and Fender Rhodes player) Noah Haidu subtly pulls him back with low-register notes. During the CD celebration at Sweet Rhythm on July 6, Haidu's soulful riffs on the keyboard had an intense gravity that might have otherwise been overlooked on the record.

"Zen Baptist, an original track by Brainin, marks the point of punctuated equilibrium. The atmosphere suddenly becomes deeply evocative and earnest, and Brainin's phrases develop melancholy and mature qualities. Some brief improvisation at the concert also brought out an abundance of passion and soul. Saving the best for last, the quartet ended their first set with one of two compositions by the talented bassist Marcus McLaurine. His arrangements add considerably to the record's mature sound; the bassist, who has played with the likes of Clark Terry and Lou Donaldson, lends a solid grasp of form and timing.

McLaurine's adept solos on "Ivar were refreshing after his conservative lines on the previous tunes. Furthermore, the dynamic communication between McLaurine and drummer Steve Johns was illuminating, even though the duo started off slightly unorganized and off-key during the show. Near the end, Johns embarked on a flashy drum finale. Though his innate sense of rhythm was laudable, the solo itself was out of place against the bouncy melody.

Each musician is very much involved on every piece, so it's not difficult to understand their efforts to fit solos in wherever they can, but they can come off as forced and artificial, leaving the listener dissatisfied with the conclusions.

Nonetheless, the group's strong, easygoing interaction can be heard throughout Rough Jazz, which is commendable for its emotive progression—and a culmination of four musicians' wide and varied experiences and talents.

Track Listing: Rough Jazz; The Days of Wine and Roses; Descarga Calabaza; River's Edge; Neocon Blues; Zen Baptist; Looking Forward; Destiny; Ivar; Zen Baptist (reprise).

Personnel: Peter Brainin: tenor and soprano saxophones, flute; Marcus McLaurine: acoustic and electric bass; Noah Haidu: piano and Fender Rhodes; Steve Johns: drums.

Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: Apria Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


comments powered by Disqus

Shop

More Articles

Read Numbers CD/LP/Track Review Numbers
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 30, 2017
Read The Busker CD/LP/Track Review The Busker
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 30, 2017
Read Pathways CD/LP/Track Review Pathways
by Jerome Wilson
Published: May 30, 2017
Read Copenhagen Live 1964 CD/LP/Track Review Copenhagen Live 1964
by Mark Corroto
Published: May 30, 2017
Read This Is Beautiful Because We Are Beautiful People CD/LP/Track Review This Is Beautiful Because We Are Beautiful People
by Matthew Aquiline
Published: May 29, 2017
Read The Colours Suite CD/LP/Track Review The Colours Suite
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 29, 2017
Read "Shawn Maxwell's New Tomorrow" CD/LP/Track Review Shawn Maxwell's New Tomorrow
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: September 16, 2016
Read "Mu" CD/LP/Track Review Mu
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 30, 2016
Read "Carve" CD/LP/Track Review Carve
by Karl Ackermann
Published: March 17, 2017
Read "Streams" CD/LP/Track Review Streams
by Geno Thackara
Published: September 17, 2016
Read "East West Time Line" CD/LP/Track Review East West Time Line
by Geannine Reid
Published: April 10, 2017
Read "Nexus" CD/LP/Track Review Nexus
by Victor L. Schermer
Published: June 1, 2016

Enhance Your AAJ Experience

Support All About Jazz and we'll deliver exclusive content, hide ads, hide slide-outs, and provide read access to our future articles.

Buy it!