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This Is Our Moosic by Mostly Other People Do The Killing

From dissonant sounding imbroglios to funky New Orleans-vibed grooves and ragtime-blues jamborees, Mostly Other People Do The Killing provide audiences with entertaining romps and creatively twined fandangos in their latest release This Is Our Moosic. The jazz quartet which comprises of trumpeter Peter Evans, saxophonist Jon Irabagon, bassist Moppa Elliott, and drummer Kevin Shea, cover a wide gamut of styles taken from the music spectrum including the energetic Boogaloo-jazz of "Drainlick" to the free-wheeling trumpet wails of "Fagundus" strapped to spy-funk-inspired bass plucks and elated saxophone spins. The lackadaisical meanderings and vaudeville-textured horns of "The Bats In Belfry" totally contrast the riverboat-jazz stylizing of "Two Boot Jacks." The instruments have a tendency to strike out at a whim with a far-reaching flare causing the phrases to sound disjointed and out of sync at times, but then honing in on each others rhythm and playing at the same time signature like a unified team.

The tracks are laid out like a caravan that sounds lost at times prompting the musicians to play by ear and improvising here and there until they are back on track. The jaunty twitters of the horns through "My Delightful Muse" are lopsided as they alternate between Evans and Irabagon in a swiftly-phrased bantering, but when they tap into each others timing, the tune picks up the pace and turns into a vivaceous jamboree. The instruments oscillate between chaotic frenzies to melodically fifed crescendos.

The quartet keeps their tracks busy continually shifting their individual rhythmic timing and chord dynamics. Treading on the avant garde and making their lines mirror an abstract painting as some lines form shapes that are familiar and pleasant while others are incongruent and seem completely eccentric. The sexy, sinuous phrasing of the horns in "Effort, Patience, Diligence" are interjected by spurts of raving drums and hot-tempered bass thrusts. These periods of looney-tune patterns cause confusion and prompt the instruments to pull back together. The ensemble’s remake of Billy Joel’s song "Allentown" is the one moment on the album when all the musicians are in sync with each other through the entire course of the track. MOPDTK pay homage to Joel’s song in a reverent manner even as the shrillish screech of the horns rides out the track.

MOPDTK’s songs are all named after towns in Pennsylvania, and their third release This Is Our Moosic keeps to this tradition. The quartet displays unrestricted freedom as each musician changes their chord patterns and rhythmic rate on a whim. They interrupt each other with a friendly gesture and abruptly shift the direction of the melodies without much resistance from the others. They accept their idiosyncrasies and flaws in their timing, and morph them into the finished product. No one person anchors these tunes, each member is as significant as the other making MOPDTK able to explore numerous musical possibilities, which they do so with the highly evolved instincts of a guru on their latest release This Is Our Moosic.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Mostly Other People Do The Killing
  • CD Title: This Is Our Moosic
  • Genre: Free Jazz / Avante Garde
  • Year Released: 2008
  • Record Label: Hot Cup Records
  • Tracks: Drainlick, Two Boot Jacks, Fagundus, The Bats in Belfry, East Orwell, My Delightful Muse, Biggertown, Effort, Patience Diligence, Allentown
  • Musicians: Peter Evans (trumpet), Kevin Shea (drums), Jon Irabagon (saxophones), Moppa Elliott (double bass)
  • Rating: Three Stars
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