Diego Rivera, With Just A Word, Posi-Tone ***1/2

Sheer instrumentalism is never in doubt when Diego Rivera releases a record. The tenor saxophonist proved that on Mestizo last year just for one example and underlines it once again here with a fiery straightahead-leaning ensemble that includes …

Published: 25 Jan 2024. Updated: 33 days.

Sheer instrumentalism is never in doubt when Diego Rivera releases a record. The tenor saxophonist proved that on Mestizo last year just for one example and underlines it once again here with a fiery straightahead-leaning ensemble that includes pianist Art Hirahara and drummer Rudy Royston from last year's release - it's trumpeter Pete Rodríguez instead of Alex Sipiagin and on bass Luques Curtis is here instead of Boris Koslov. Pick of the tracks are the traditional piece associated with John Coltrane that appeared on Africa/Brass, 'Song of the Underground Railroad,' where the Mexican-American unleashes just some of the sheer power and expressive resource at his disposal. Rivera's own tune the lovely ballad 'Dignified Response' is also one of the best things here. And in terms of repertoire the choice of Tony Williams' 'Pee Wee' that was on Miles Davis 1967 album Sorcerer and rarely heard covered these days is also a solid one.

Tags: reviews

Jim Snidero, For All We Know, Savant ***1/2

All you need is a great drummer and bassist and a saxist with protean ideas about improvising on a familiar theme soloing over the top - that's what For All We Know seems to be saying and saying it in such no-nonsense fashion. Drummer Joe …

Published: 24 Jan 2024. Updated: 34 days.

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All you need is a great drummer and bassist and a saxist with protean ideas about improvising on a familiar theme soloing over the top - that's what For All We Know seems to be saying and saying it in such no-nonsense fashion. Drummer Joe Farnsworth and bass icon Peter Washington give ideal support to altoist Jim Snidero here on a set of familiar standards - my only carp is the material ('My Funny Valentine,' 'Naima,' 'Willow Weep For Me' and so on) is too familiar. But what Snidero is able to do even given this with his reactions to the themes in his improvisations is the really interesting customised bit - what he does to 'You Go To My Head' in particular one of the highlights on, yes, a real ''bebop heads'' album is a track you will be returning to time and time again. SG

Out on 16 February. L-r in the photo: Kenny Washington, Jim Snidero, Joe Farnsworth. 'Parker's Mood' from the album is streaming