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Representing jazz's modern mainstream, Drew Gress' quartet album swings, while offeringat the same timeunexpected changes of direction. Saxophones, piano, bass and drums interact with a spirit that implies reserves of energy. That motion is sitting there, rocking, and waiting for a chance to explode. Fortunately, this veteran quartet knows how to harness the energy. Uri Caine provides exciting dances up and down the piano's keyboard, with measured phrases that format his creative ideas. Tim Berne offers a thin, edgy tone that blends with piano and darts in and out of the quartet's improvised counterpoint. His classical approach to the alto saxophone carries a warm feeling that serves to unify the ensemble. Gress and Tom Rainey interact as partners in this foursome; they're not here simply to provide a rhythm. Instead, each of the four artists accepts equal roles.
Drew Gress, 42, grew up in the Baltimore/Washington DC area and now works out of New York. While he considers his East Coast environment conducive to an aggressive style, Spin & Drift cannot be described as either hard-bop-derived or avant-garde experimentation. Rather, his band, Spin & Drift, communicates variety through tension and release. It's natural. From their rompin' and stompin' "Sledmouth Chronicles," to Gress' lyrical solo on "Pang," the session absorbs the listener because of its unpredictable changes and comfortable ease of transition.
Track Listing: Disappearing, Act 1; Torque; It Was After Rain That the Angel Came; Jet Precipice; Aquamarine; The Sledmouth Chronicles; Here, at the Bottom of the Sky; Pang; New Leaf.
Personnel: Drew Gress: acoustic bass, pedal steel guitar (6); Tim Berne: alto saxophone, baritone saxophone (1, 7, 9); Uri Caine: piano; Tom Rainey: drums, percussion.
I love jazz because with it I found my true voice. I have always sung since I was a very small child in school and church. And there have been many genre that I have enjoyed including spiritual, folk, country, latin, soca and pop
I love jazz because with it I found my true voice. I have always sung since I was a very small child in school and church. And there have been many genre that I have enjoyed including spiritual, folk, country, latin, soca and pop. But nothing has touched my artistic sensiblities like JAZZ! Two years ago I moved to Sarasota, FL where I renewed my focus on my singing career and I was so impressed with the quality, quantity and generousity of talented jazz musicains in the Suncoast area. I soon partnered with piano legend Billy Marcus and his trio with Don Mopsick and Stephen Bucholtz. What a blast working with these guys and having them back me up on my first jaz album, Here's To You... which was just released on October 1st. I can't wait to see where the coming year brings me! Check out syniacarrolljazz.com