227

Shapes: The Big Picture

Jim Santella By

Sign in to view read count
Shapes: The Big Picture Combining smooth jazz originals with classic standards, Shapes weave a collective web of familiar sounds that could easily describe your most recent nostalgic trip to the DVD rental store. Let by vibraphonist/pianist Roger Burn and harmonica player Tollak Ollestad, Shapes form their double CD into a program that easily recalls relaxed movie scenes in general.

"The Big Picture" strolls leisurely with a Brazilian bossa nova flavor. Ollestad and Burn team with flutist Andy Suzuki for a light sensation that could well represent a romantic movie scene where folks are faced with nothing more dangerous than their emotions and the ocean's pulsing waves.

Burn's originals take on a smooth jazz flavor that emphasizes a thundering drum set, cool electric and acoustic bass pulses, and harmonic blends from varied horns. "Lobster" struts and strolls with a funk drive that takes the band into high gear. Dedicated to Jimmy Haslip, Russell Ferrante, and Robben Ford, Burn's piece provides plenty of room for high-powered exploration. As Ollestad, Ford, Suzuki, and Burn stretch out, the listener gets pulled into the mix, as if drawn into the plot of a classic movie. Ferrante supplies the classic organ sound that makes this one so delicious.

"Love for Sale" combines the swinging romanticism of the piece with a collage of unorthodox sounds. It works. Beginning with an eerie, sci-fi, electronic fade in, the band's arrangement allows for a smooth transition that eventually entertains Burn's smooth jazz piano in a swinging affair. Along the way, clarinet, bass clarinet and trombone add significant digressions. The band sweeps this one away with an attitude that says, "Let's do something different today, dear, because I'm sick and tired of the same ol' thing."

"I Didn't Know What Time It Was" begins with a mellow cello/piano duet. The classical touch continues, as Pauline Wilson sings the familiar torch song with grace: light as a feather. Ferrante's use of sampled strings gives the arrangement significant charm.

Shapes give their audience variety. They run hot and contemporary. They also run mellow and nostalgic. The mixture makes for a pleasant evening. Like a night at the movies, this performance provides uppers and downers to capture your imagination fully. Forget about the popcorn; save your appetite for the music.

Track Listing: Disc 1: Arc of Twilight; Naima; The Big Picture; Gabriela; Eat the Heat; Lobster; Measure Once; Sotto Voce. Disc 2: Softly, As In a Morning Sunrise; Love for Sale; In the Outdoors; I Didn't Know What Time It Was; Automat; I Still Remember; What Now?

Personnel: Tollak Ollestad- harmonica, bass harmonica, background vocals, piano, synth; Roger Burn- vibraphone, acoustic piano, marimba, B-3 organ; Robben Ford, Matthew Von Doran, Mike Higgins, Ken Lassaine, Doug Livingston- guitar; Andy Suzuki- flute, alto flute, clarinet, bass clarinet, soprano saxophone, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone; Russell Ferrante- acoustic piano, B-3 organ, synth, sampled strings; Jimmy Haslip- electric bass, tambourine, background vocals, synth; Larry Steen, Dean Taba- acoustic bass; Roy McCurdy, David Derge- drums; Michael Barsimanto- drums, cymbals; Walfredo Reyes, Jr., Billy Hulting- percussion; Joe Turano- accordion; Wayne Cook- B-3 organ; Rick Rossi- flute; Bill Bergman- tenor saxophone; Les Lovitz- trumpet; Mike Fahn- valve trombone; Steve Baxter- trombone; George McMullen- trombone, didgeridoo; Nick Lane- trombone, bass trombone; Matt Catingub- alto saxophone on "I Didn't Know What Time It Was;" Pauline Wilson- vocal on "I Didn't Know What Time It Was;" Wally Wino- vocal on "Measure Once."

Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Burnin' Down the House Records | Style: Contemporary/Smooth


Shop

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles

More Articles

Read United CD/LP/Track Review United
by Mark Sullivan
Published: March 23, 2017
Read Chromola CD/LP/Track Review Chromola
by John Eyles
Published: March 23, 2017
Read Satin Doll – A Tribute to Billy Strayhorn CD/LP/Track Review Satin Doll – A Tribute to Billy Strayhorn
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: March 23, 2017
Read Nature City CD/LP/Track Review Nature City
by Henning Bolte
Published: March 23, 2017
Read Beninghove's Hangmen Plays Led Zeppelin CD/LP/Track Review Beninghove's Hangmen Plays Led Zeppelin
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: March 23, 2017
Read This Is The Uplifting Part CD/LP/Track Review This Is The Uplifting Part
by Karl Ackermann
Published: March 22, 2017
Read "Spacebound Apes" CD/LP/Track Review Spacebound Apes
by Phil Barnes
Published: September 14, 2016
Read "Sunflower / Goodbye" CD/LP/Track Review Sunflower / Goodbye
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: September 28, 2016
Read "The Hive" CD/LP/Track Review The Hive
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: November 14, 2016
Read "Brain//Child" CD/LP/Track Review Brain//Child
by Geno Thackara
Published: December 24, 2016
Read "Up Go We" CD/LP/Track Review Up Go We
by Budd Kopman
Published: August 4, 2016
Read "Metamorphosis" CD/LP/Track Review Metamorphosis
by Dave Wayne
Published: July 12, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: DOT TIME RECORDS | BUT 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!