Archive for August 25th, 2012

I happened To Hear 08/2012

You already know that Brian Bromberg is not like other bassists you’ve heard right? Well as a measure of how different he is, during May-June 2012, he released 3 albums, two of them on the same day!

Let’s get into the first, ‘Compared to That’. If you loved his CD ‘Downright Upright’ (I did) then the opener to this set (the title track) will get you smiling straight off. It’s a big band stomper with Bromberg’s trademark humour and some fabulous acoustic bass soloing. And you recognise that sense of fun in ‘What if Ray brown was a Cowboy?’ – a lovely lazy jazz trio tribute to one of jazz’s greatest. Enjoy the lovely piano on this song. And enjoy Béla Fleck’s flying banjo lines on ‘Hayride’. It’s a joyous country romp and I bet I’m not the only who can picture a team of guys with sleeves rolled up triumphantly lifting the last piece of a barn into place somewhere in Pennsylvania…

In stark contrast, the funky, horn-laden ‘A Little New Old School’ could be a Tower of Power outing minus vocals. The electric bass is laying it down here and Randy Brecker dives in with a scorching trumpet solo. ‘Does Anyone Really Know What Time it Is?’ is a gorgeous swinging big band tune with a sweet lead guitar line, ah but you know Bromberg’s ‘lead guitar’ is actually him on bass don’t you? Gary Meek’s tenor sax plays off the ‘guitar’ lines really nicely and I’m drinking Crown Royal in the best jazz club in town… And if you want to get lost in a nine-minute dream, flip to track 9 for ‘The Eclipse’ and soak up the jazz vibe as Bromberg’s fretless and Brecker’s smoky flugelhorn weave a spell you won’t want to break.

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