5

Jay Smith Group: Unashamed Portrayal

Glenn Astarita By

Sign in to view read count
Jay Smith Group: Unashamed Portrayal California-based keyboardist Jay Smith's worldly musical views radiate mightily, as he borrows from the past and reformulates a refreshingly modern vibe, spanning jazz-fusion, blues-rock and more. He also injects panache into the proceedings and garners top-notch support, while fusing a coalition of memorable melodies with a rather ferocious improvisational element. The keyboardist incorporates a vastly entertaining subsystem with penetrating frameworks amid various climactically oriented rhythmical drivers.

Smith is a catalyst and colorist, and weaves around blistering solo spots by guitarist Andre Bush and the horn players. The keyboardist also merges a touch of playful insanity into a few segments. On "Elephant Shoes," the musicians kick it off with a Ravel "Bolero" motif, segueing into a regal thematic opus spiced with a brawny shuffle groove, complemented by a Latin-jazz vamp and catchy licks. Smith is no softy, however, as he reformulates the primary theme with rolling waves of fluent single-note clusters, performed on piano.

Bush's soaring, extended-note hard-rock blues spots add a sense of antiquity into certain aspects of the production. and Smith's busy yet productive mode of attack is underscored by unadulterated passion. The band conveys quite a bit of impact via weighty choruses, blaring horns parts and edgy funk breakouts. On "The End," Smith and Bush kick out the jams to contrast an album largely modeled with sustainable works, thought-provoking arrangements and harmonically attractive developments. They pull out the proverbial stops with an assertive 'tude on this well- rounded outing. Smith obviously didn't slap this album together without putting a great deal of forethought into the overall game plan.


Track Listing: Alegna; Elephant Shoes; Static; Break; Alegna-Trio; Past; Something for Cara; The End.

Personnel: Andre Bush: guitar; Jay Smith: piano, keyboards, synth; Jay Jay Hicks: bass; Jonathan Weinmann: drums; Chris Nguyen: saxophone; Joe Vasquez: trombone; Mark Manda: trumpet; Fernando Montoya: upright bass; Nunzio Urbina: percussion.

Year Released: 2012 | Record Label: Self Produced | Style: Beyond Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read Road to Forever CD/LP/Track Review Road to Forever
by Jack Bowers
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Avenida Graham CD/LP/Track Review Avenida Graham
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 27, 2017
Read TAI Fest #1 (Vol.1&2) CD/LP/Track Review TAI Fest #1 (Vol.1&2)
by Nicola Negri
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Goat Man & The House of the Dead CD/LP/Track Review Goat Man & The House of the Dead
by Dave Wayne
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Backlog CD/LP/Track Review Backlog
by James Nadal
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Acceptance CD/LP/Track Review Acceptance
by Tyran Grillo
Published: February 26, 2017
Read "A Good Time Was Had By All" CD/LP/Track Review A Good Time Was Had By All
by Jack Bowers
Published: July 25, 2016
Read "Parachute" CD/LP/Track Review Parachute
by Mike Jacobs
Published: September 13, 2016
Read "Back Home" CD/LP/Track Review Back Home
by Jack Bowers
Published: March 15, 2016
Read "All These Hands" CD/LP/Track Review All These Hands
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 20, 2016
Read "Purple Patio" CD/LP/Track Review Purple Patio
by John Sharpe
Published: October 1, 2016
Read "Koan" CD/LP/Track Review Koan
by Mark Corroto
Published: August 12, 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!