All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Pay $20 and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page, plus this box and the slideout box on the right for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.
Too often, liner notes have about the objectiveness of a recommendation letter written by a mother on behalf of her child. It's possible that good qualities are exalted, but it's just as likely that strengths are exaggerated and comparisons with the genre's greats are too easily made. Guitarist Adam Rogers' latest recording is a notable exception. The effusive praise is merited, and any declarations are fully supported by the tight arrangements and intoxicating melodies.
"Young and Foolish" is described as achieving "effortless lyricism that exemplifies a 'profound simplicity.'" Nothing could be truer. The "I Loves You, Porgy" description name-drops Miles and Gil Evans, but only as a genealogical backdrop of sorts. Rogers, bassist Scott Colley and drummer Bill Stewart make this song their own in a refreshing, entirely honest way; it's a straightforward composition that is executed respectfully and unpretentiously, Rogers' sharp but mellifluous notes contoured by strong bass. The most compelling track, however, is "Esteban," inspired by Gabriel Garcia Marquez' short story "The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World," whose protagonist is named Esteban by enchanted villagers in a remote town in Colombia. The track sounds like the story feels, and the five minutes are packed with a regional sound that feels genuine and exotic, largely due to Rogers' emotional and versatile guitar playing. "Esteban" is followed by "Without a Song," a slinky, lighthearted track that delivers a brisk effect by way of Stewart's steady drumming.
The liners quote Rogers as commenting that "even after years of playing, there is still so much mystery in this art, which can be wonderful, surprising, sometimes confusing, but rarely uninteresting." The same can be said for Time and the Infinite, and there is no trace of embellishment in that conclusion.
Track Listing: Night and Day; Elegy; Time and the Infinite; Young and Foolish; Cheryl; Esteban; Without a Song; Ides of March; I Loves You, Porgy.
Personnel: Adam Rogers: guitar; Scott Colley: bass; Bill Stewart: drums.
I grew up listening to mainstream '70s rock then ended up on the staff at the college paper at San Diego State, and volunteered to review heavy metal LPs. My second semester, the music editor dropped a Fenton Robinson LP on my desk, Night Flight. You like metal; they play guitar--he plays guitar, the editor told me
I grew up listening to mainstream '70s rock then ended up on the staff at the college paper at San Diego State, and volunteered to review heavy metal LPs. My second semester, the music editor dropped a Fenton Robinson LP on my desk, Night Flight. You like metal; they play guitar--he plays guitar, the editor told me. If we don't run a review, Alligator Records is going to stop servicing us.
Night Flight opened up a whole new world for me--the blues led me, inevitably, to Basie, who led to Duke, who led to Mingus, who led to Miles, who led to ...