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Bebop Spoken There

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April 29: Vieux Carré Jazzmen are back at The Holystone.

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June 7: Jazz in the Afternoon are back at Cullercoats Crescent Club.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

CD Review: Roan Kearsey-Lawson - Presence in Mind.


Roan Kearsey-Lawson (vbs) also (marimba/dms/pno); Dorian Ford (pno); Larry Bartley (bs); Dave Trigwell (dms); Duncan Lamont (fl/ten/alt/bs.clt) + Ray Butcher (tpt/flg); Geoff Mason (tmb).
All titles composed by Roan Kearsey-Lawson.
(Review by Lance).
Although this is Kearsey-Lawson's début album it nevertheless has a maturity about it that is often missing from some albums by longer established jazz names. Of course the presence of Lamont Jr. helps but even on the tracks where the flautist/saxist is absent the quality still shines through.
The opener, Splendid Blues, is reminiscent of early MJQ back in the days when they still knew how to swing (Bags Groove etc). Bach East is simply delightful with, as the title implies, a nod to JSB - the first great improviser. Lamont's flute, the icing on the cake here. More flute delicacy with My Love For You before the two movement Concerto D'Afro which purports to be a story of the history of jazz from the roots of Africa. Quite a challenge to accomplish this in two movements. However, if you simply treat it as a piece that features hypnotic rhythms and a contrasting swing section as well as the leader's marimba and Lamont's tenor and bass clarinet it works well.
Presence brings trombonist Mason aboard adding some nice tonal variations. Mason stays on deck for Serendipity joined by Butcher on trumpet and Lamont, this time on alto. It's a lovely tune over a familiar sounding sequence that would easily lend itself to a lyricist. The short solo bursts are effective.
Empathy has RKL on piano, Lamont on flute, with bass and drums. It's well named - the Empathy is mutually displayed. On Fondness, RKL edges Trigwell off the drumstool and Lamont (alto) and Butcher (flugel) have their shining hour (actually 4 min 21 secs). Oh yes, and our man is no mug behind the kit!
Saved, a jazz waltz dedicated to RKL's stepfather again has Lamont fluting. Lullaby of Love an emotional quartet outpouring brings us to Brother's Bounce and a jolly tune that would surely have cracked a smile on the faces of Messrs Lewis, Jackson, Heath and Kay (AKA MJQ).
If I've concentrated on RKL and Lamont too much I deserve a slap on the wrist as Dorian Ford, Bartley and Trigwell all contribute to making this a record that deserves to be heard by the wider jazz public - not easy for a self-released CD.

7 comments :

Anonymous said...

Great to see someone creating MJQ sounds

Monica Anders said...

This music spins an inventive sound of jazz and a byte of fusion using a collective voice of instruments. They sing together touching each note as it follows the next groove .The Vibes and Bass with extraordinary punches of the horns breeds a new blend of eclectic music. Yes for me it is "FusicJazz" Monica Anders PR Strategist for Grammy Icon Teddy Riley & The Producer's Corner with Spud Too Tight A Celebrity Music Production & Tech Talk Show USA

Matthew said...

Well well well what a great CD!!! Got one to play at work for back ground music, but have not turned it off yet & it's been turned up now!!! What a great vides player. Buy one Now!!!

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lance said...

Album notes say Ray Butcher on trumpet and flugel.

Unknown said...

You can find out more about my music on www.raybutcher.co.uk

Lance said...

Check out Ray Butcher on the above link.

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