Good things are emanating from upstate New York as the region's prominent saxophonist/composer Brian Patneaude delivers the goods in rather resplendent, and unhurried fashion on this enticing 2009 effort. With rising star and New York City-based guitarist Mike Moreno, the album instills mood-evoking musical panoramas, polytonal textures and wondrously articulated soloing spots by the front-line.
Organist Jesse Chandler provides the additional ammo, where the band generates an abundance of interweaving textures atop the rhythm section's oscillating grooves. Abetted by memorable comps and the artists' keen placement of dynamics they conjure up gobs of depth via these top-notch arrangements. Moreno's fluent and at times, ethereal lines are constructed with mild tension/release statements and rapid-fire single note licks. Sure enough, the triad of soloists loom as strong foils throughout.
Many of these works are designed with gradually ascending themes and detailed treatments. On Patneaude's "Release," the band fuses a buoyant and pesky vibe with an air of innocence, all enamored by the anthem-like primary theme. Another standout is the leader's piece titled "Drop," which features a radiating melody among the musicians' triumphant outlook. Here, Chandler generates a slightly ominous undercurrent via his low register phrasings while Moreno launches into a breezy, dark-toned solo.
Strong compositions yield the winning formula here. It's progressive-jazz with nicely-placed solo spots, as the band raises the temperature and then lowers the pitch. And the soloists execute some high-heat as well. They inject the requisite warmth into Billy Strayhorn's classic "Chelsea Bridge," while also covering pianist Don Grolnick's "The Cost Of Living." The quartet seemingly plays all the right notes during this irrefutably compelling album that should find itself on a legion of 2009 top-ten lists. (Don't miss out...)