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Rhythm Future Quartet: Travels

Dan McClenaghan By

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Gypsy jazz started, in terms of popular recognition, with guitarist Django Reinhardt and violinist Stephane Grappelli, and their lively and supremely swinging Qunintette du Hot Club du France. The group recorded hundreds of tunes in the thirties and and forties, released on the 78 rpm discs that were the recorded music mode at the time, and left a lasting and perhaps unmatchable legacy.

Drawing deeply on that legacy, the Rhythm Future Quartet does its part by pushing the gypsy sound forward in the new millennium.

Greg Loughman, the group's bassist, penned the opening cut, "Iberian Sunrise," a bright, up-tempo tune that begins with a two-guitar shimmer from Olli Soikkeli and Max O'Rourke, inviting violinist Jason Anick into to begin a lesson in swing, a sound the group transforms into an atmospheric segment before wrapping up with bring, wrap-up return to the gypsy sound.

"Come Together," from the Lennon/McCartney songbook, takes the sound as far away from the Hot Club as it can get, with a quirky, off-kilter violin solo combined collective energy and the respect for the mood and melody of the original makes it a highlight.



Taking into mind the nomad nature of gypsys—and the wanderlust nature of the Rhythm Future Quartet's members—the title tune, written by violinist Anick and guitarist O'Rourke—craft a cinematic soundscape, majestic and pastoral, suggesting vast vistas mist-shrouded, grass-covered hills. "Bushwick Stomp," written by guitarist Soikkeli to celebrate his move to Brooklyn, revisits the gypsy tradition, featuring a red-hot guitar solo from the writer. The mid-tempo "Amsterdam," an Anick original, is unabashedly lovely.

Travels showcases a vibrantly virtuosic string band pushing the gypsy tradition around, slipping outside the borders of the genre with style.

Track Listing: Iberian Sunrise; Come together; For Paulus; Travels; Vessela; Don't Tell Me; Still Winter; The Keeper; Bushwick Stomp; Je Suis Seul Cd Soir; Round Hill; Amsterdam; Made In France.

Personnel: Jason Anick: violin; Olli Soikkeli: guitar; Max O'Rourke: guitar; Greg Loughman: bass.

Title: Travels | Year Released: 2016 | Record Label: Self Produced

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