All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

184

Russ Nolan: Two Colors

Elliott Simon By

Sign in to view read count
Two Colors begins with a pleasantly laid back meeting between Willy Wonka and Miles Davis—a meeting that has the "Pure Imagination" melody from the children's film being reharmonized with Miles' "It's About That Time." From there, things get a bit more intense as pianist Sam Barsh, bassist Sean Conly, and drummer Vinnie Sperrazza take the journey through saxophonist Russ Nolan's intriguing musical mind. Nolan switches from soprano to tenor and weaves bop, cool and swing with a dash of Latin into his own melange on seven originals.

"Two Colors" turns out to be blue in green as the rhythm section takes the Miles classic up-tempo to serve as a vehicle for Conly to be in control while Nolan wails a mean soprano. One can't help but be impressed by Barsh, who belies his youth and is equal partner to Nolan's wide range. Barsh effortlessly imposes a lovely Latin feel to "The One Smiling," bops through the unpredictable changes of "Hai Sensei," and flat out burns on "East Stroudsburg Stomp," the soprano blow-fest and tribute to Nolan mentor Dave Liebman.

Although somewhat of a newcomer to NYC, Nolan has obviously been around, and this debut shows his strong suite to be a facility in moving from soprano to tenor without sacrificing a step. This makes for an appealing session that holds your interest with its broad tonal palette. Nolan wisely chooses his tenor to take things home at a leisurely but melodic pace on "Light Traveler" while Barsh sets up a beautifully flowing backdrop. Nolan is a most able stylist/composer who, for his debut as a leader, has formed a wonderful partnership with pianist Sam Barsh. Here's hoping that there will be more to come from this terrific twosome.


Track Listing: 1. Pure Imagination; 2. The One Smiling; 3. Two Colors; 4. End of Innocence; 5. Spring is Here; 6. Hai Sensei; 7. Shadow; 8. East Stroudsburg Stomp; 9. Light Traveler.

Personnel: Russ Nolan-tenor and soprano saxophones; Sam Barsh-piano; Sean Conly-Bass; Vinnie Sperrazza- drums.

Title: Two Colors | Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Rhinoceruss Music

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Two Colors

Two Colors

Russ Nolan
Two Colors

Stand Clear of the Closing Doors

Stand Clear of the Closing Doors

Russ Nolan
With You in Mind

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Sanctuary From The Ordinary: Live At Firehouse 12

Sanctuary From The...

Rhinoceruss Music
2016

buy
Call It What You Want

Call It What You Want

Rhinoceruss Music
2015

buy
Relentless

Relentless

Rhinoceruss Music
2014

buy
Tell Me

Tell Me

Rhinoceruss Music
2012

buy
With You in Mind

With You in Mind

Rhinoceruss Music
2008

buy
Two Colors

Two Colors

Rhinoceruss Music
2005

buy

Related Articles

Read My Singing Fingers CD/LP/Track Review
My Singing Fingers
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: May 25, 2018
Read Ain't It Grand? CD/LP/Track Review
Ain't It Grand?
by Jack Bowers
Published: May 25, 2018
Read If Not Now, When? CD/LP/Track Review
If Not Now, When?
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: May 25, 2018
Read Perfectly Unhappy CD/LP/Track Review
Perfectly Unhappy
by Gareth Thompson
Published: May 25, 2018
Read Sorrows & Triumphs CD/LP/Track Review
Sorrows & Triumphs
by Jerome Wilson
Published: May 25, 2018
Read Half Light CD/LP/Track Review
Half Light
by Karl Ackermann
Published: May 24, 2018
Read "Tales From Under" CD/LP/Track Review Tales From Under
by James Nadal
Published: July 5, 2017
Read "From Silence to Somewhere" CD/LP/Track Review From Silence to Somewhere
by Glenn Astarita
Published: March 21, 2018
Read "Mephiti" CD/LP/Track Review Mephiti
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 24, 2018
Read "Last Minute Panic" CD/LP/Track Review Last Minute Panic
by Ian Patterson
Published: December 18, 2017
Read "Nightfall" CD/LP/Track Review Nightfall
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: October 6, 2017
Read "The Danish Sessions" CD/LP/Track Review The Danish Sessions
by Chris Mosey
Published: August 2, 2017