Swiss Drummer Tom Renold has had a long career playing for musicians whose calling ranged from straight-ahead to free jazz. On his first release at the helm, Renold showcases compositions that touch on different styles, a compendium that he authored over twenty years. His melodies are pleasing, but the greater appeal comes in the way the players shape the music through interaction and their sense of invention and dynamics.
These attributes are seen right off as they open with the reflective "The Shadow and the Light," the broad tonality of Michael Gassmann's trumpet countenanced by the edgy permutations of Michael Bucher's guitar. The contrast brings in a striking dimension. The mood is decidedly upbeat on "Cecile's Chant," a delightful tune with a Latin lilt. Renold is always on the go, changing the trajectory of the beat, slipping in accents that shift the rhythm and moving the pulse to give the song different contours.
There is a folk tinge to the melody of "Una Storia Italiana," which is essayed in long, flowing lines by Gassmann. His progression is measured and thoughtful, but he is not beyond infusing short, sharp jabs and adding to the effect.
A solid debut.
Track Listing: The Shadow and the Light; Monk
Personnel: Michael Gassmann: trumpet; Michael Bucher: guitar; Patrick Sommer: bass; Tony Renold: