Barcelona, Spain., native Dave Juarez is well-educated in the jazz vernacular amid studies with guitar great John Abercrombie and tenure at SUNY Purchase upon his relocation to New York. Here, the artist shows agility, focus and a multidimensional line of attack with his estimable supporting lineup. He alternates moods, tonalities and shadings while shifting the stride and launching animated solos alongside pianist John Escreet and saxophonist Seamus Blake.
Juarez’ compositions are linear and sometimes ride atop a broad horizontal plane, although there’s more bounce and pop then a staid musical climate. The piece “Lonely Brooklyn,” highlights the artist’s compositional attributes. Here, the band embarks upon a sprightly bop framework designed with brisk unison phrasings and a frothy pulse. Juarez shows grace and a sense of ownership via his penchant for building tension, but nicely contrasted by harmonious thematic constructions. With a joyous storyline, the band branches out into the improvisational strata, augmented by Escreet’s zinging harmonics and melodic intervals.
The musicians work within a hearty modus operandi that is keenly complemented by the vibrant soloing jaunts and focused group-centric methodology. Indeed, Juarez has done his homework. Perhaps the best is yet to come from this talented artist whose shining star may be a near-term certainty.