A spiral of sounds, a tapestry of festive twirls, a conflagration of zig-zagging patterns, and trestles of liberating vibrations ornate Jason Rigby’s newly released sophomore album The Sage from the Fresh Sound New Talent label. The impromptu stanzas procure a magma of swirls intertwining with a ravenous hunger. Rigby’s saxophone twitters and flaps vivaciously as bassist Cameron Brown and drummer Gerald Cleaver display a solidarity that is firm and complementary to trumpeter Russ Johnson and the underbelly of keyboard action performed by Mike Holober. The compositions have a comfortable free-style that is pliable and changes its curves randomly. A bit esoteric and emphatically avant-garde, The Sage is where art and emotive impulses join hands and exchange electrons with each other.
The instruments kindle a melee that swishes and sloshes spontaneously through "Magenta" with a verbosity in the melodic phrases that is articulate and spacious. Oscillating between being boisterous and serene, Rigby’s band stretches out in all directions through "Crux" as the portly rhythmic beats paddle to keep up with the flow. Forming tightly squeezed dreadlocks and loose curls in their improvisations, Rigby and crew play with fervor making trenches and heaps along the chord movements. The colorful soundscapes of Holober’s keyboards in "Shift Of Color" give the tune an atmospheric flare, while the angular cuts in the title track chisel abstract designs. The cohesiveness of the pieces rests on the musicians ability to converse with each other openly and augment each other’s parts. Rigby’s saxophone rains down on the pieces with an enigmatic presence, sometimes with a piercing shrill and sometimes with soothing strokes. Movements prance and waltz at a whim employing funky-blues intonations in the chassis supporting "Slip," and sinuous romps with a splash of an impromptu zing in the melodic grid of "The Archer." The band’s exertions draw out dynamic swivels and coordinate sloping lines that swerve into an intricate labyrinth which boggles the mind.
Rigby has performed, toured and recorded as a leader of his own band and has contributed as a sideman on a number of creatively avant-garde styled projects. Translucent Space, his debut recording as a leader, garnered him worldwide attention and his sophomore effort, The Sage, is bound to escalate his notoriety. His compositions are inventive and display a creativity that inspires such abstract musings in others.