213

Mostly Other People Do The Killing: This Is Our Moosic

Mark Corroto By

Sign in to view read count
Mostly Other People Do The Killing: This Is Our Moosic And the call came out from the emperor Wynton Marsalis to his loyal henchman Stanley Crouch, "Bring me the head of Moppa Elliott, and deliver his dome on a ride cymbal!” In fact, the Lord of Lincoln Center demanded the heads of all the members of the band Mostly Other People Do The Killing or MOPDTK. The PC police of the jazz canon could not allow these uprisings to gain popular acceptance. You must agree. We cannot have the 1960s all over again, can we?



In fact bassist Moppa Elliott wants us to relive the sixties and well, the twenties, the 1970s—all in one giant stew of sound. And ‘stew’ might be the perfect term for this music because it can mean both to boil, simmer, and steam, or perhaps the term for a place where prostitutes apply their trade; in other words. a whorehouse. And brothels were where jazzmen first applied their craft, in fact ‘jass’ or ‘jazz’ refers to copulation or coitus. But I digress



“You can put lipstick on a pig,” the band MOPDTK seems to be asking us (to borrow a phrase from this years elections), “but can you get the pig to take a bow?” In other words, you can play real jazz wearing a tuxedo, in Lincoln Center, but, folks, it will never be classical music.



This Is Our Moosic is the quartet’s third disc, following Shamokin!!! (2007) and their self-titled debut (2004). The members include leader and bassist Moppa Elliott, a graduate of Oberlin’s conservatory of Music, drummer Kevin Shea, saxophonist Jon Irabagon and trumpeter Peter Evans. Evans grabbed the attention of the jazz world last year, with his quartet recording for Firehouse 12 Records and an impressive solo outing for Evan Parker’s PSI label.



The closest comparison to other bands might be Steven Bernstein’s Sexmob or The Bad Plus. But where The Bad Plus is micro economics, MOPDTK is macro economics. They are extreme extroverts of jazz playing music at the highest level and they might just mix Freddie Hubbard with Freddy Fender.



For instance, Elliott’s tune “Biggertown” is a three rhythm change tune based loosely (very loosely) around the primary key centers of “Giant Steps.” If his band was anything but first rate, they could never attempt this degree of difficulty. Saying that, listening to the frenetic changes is both difficult and fun at the same time. This grab bag of thoughts persists throughout. The smooth jazz destruction of “East Orwell” opens like a sweet 1970s TV movie before disco thumps into the mix and then a thought salad verse introduces Ornette-like phrases that morph into Marshall Allen.



The boys aren’t afraid to play attractive music, squeezing out the blues-based “Effort, Patience, Diligence” or dealing with the boogaloo of “Drainlick,” both real booty shakers. Both tracks have incredible vibes. The rhythms are grounded in Elliott’s bass and drummer Kevin Shea, the American equivalent of Han Bennink. They play one cover, Billy Joel’s “Allentown.” The closer is played as a straight pop tune. Irony is certainly not dead.


Track Listing: Drainlick; Two Boot Jacks; Fagundus; The Bats In Belfry; East Orwell; My Delightful Muse; Biggertown; Effort, Patience, Diligence; Allentown.

Personnel: Peter Evans: trumpet; Kevin Shea: drums; Jon Irabagon: alto saxophone; Moppa Elliott: double-bass.

Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Hot Cup Records | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

CD/LP/Track Review
Live Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
General Articles
Read more articles
Pat Metheny Pat Metheny
guitar
Ornette Coleman Ornette Coleman
sax, alto
John Zorn John Zorn
sax, alto
William Parker William Parker
bass, acoustic
Nels Cline Nels Cline
guitar, electric
Fred Anderson Fred Anderson
saxophone
Tim Berne Tim Berne
saxophone
Henry Grimes Henry Grimes
bass, acoustic

More Articles

Read A Dark and Stormy Day CD/LP/Track Review A Dark and Stormy Day
by Dave Wayne
Published: March 1, 2017
Read Pocono Git-Down CD/LP/Track Review Pocono Git-Down
by Edward Blanco
Published: March 1, 2017
Read Rímur CD/LP/Track Review Rímur
by Henning Bolte
Published: March 1, 2017
Read Schönbrunn CD/LP/Track Review Schönbrunn
by Tyran Grillo
Published: March 1, 2017
Read Northern Adventures CD/LP/Track Review Northern Adventures
by Jack Bowers
Published: February 28, 2017
Read Collider CD/LP/Track Review Collider
by John Sharpe
Published: February 28, 2017
Read "No Coming, No Going – The Music of Peter Kuhn 1978-1979" CD/LP/Track Review No Coming, No Going – The Music of Peter Kuhn 1978-1979
by John Sharpe
Published: August 5, 2016
Read "Sir Nebula" CD/LP/Track Review Sir Nebula
by Doug Collette
Published: September 18, 2016
Read "Leaving Everything Behind" CD/LP/Track Review Leaving Everything Behind
by Dave Wayne
Published: July 4, 2016
Read "One for Marian" CD/LP/Track Review One for Marian
by Victor L. Schermer
Published: June 14, 2016
Read "Continuum" CD/LP/Track Review Continuum
by Karl Ackermann
Published: March 31, 2016
Read "Unlimited 1, Live at Catalina's" CD/LP/Track Review Unlimited 1, Live at Catalina's
by Jack Bowers
Published: November 22, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: Jazz Near You | GET 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!

Buy it!