Terence Blanchard Quintet at Jazz Standard
New York, Jazz Standard, 9th January 2011
Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
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Terence Blanchard Quintet
Brice Winston - tenor saxophone
Fabian Almazan - piano
Joe Sanders - bass
Kendrick Scott - drums
Press: April Thibeault
Terence Blanchard is a high energy performer, and,
with tonight's quintet at Jazz Standard, he was propulsive. Blanchard and Brice
Winston hopped right in on brass, with Winston's sax on fire. Fabian Almazan, on
piano, picked up the beat, as Blanchard led pulsating blasts, and the music became
atonal. The higher the brass notes, the more accentuated Kendrick Scott's drum riffs.
Joe Sanders, on bass, shared many musical conversations with Scott, as the sound
grew increasingly compelling. Almazan, from Cuba, added spice and clavé to the arrangements.
Blanchard's new CD, "Choices", he said, referred to choices we make in life, so
he played a voiceover of Dr. Cornell West speaking lines like, "What are you ‘gonna'
do with your life?". At this point, the mood waxed mellow, and the drums took a
break. Blanchard was in total command of the room, with an unusually midnight sound,
before Dr. West's voice could be again heard, followed by the bluesy band. The sax-trumpet
conversation merged into blissful echoes.
"Autumn Leaves" was presented in a long, fragmented arrangement, with a staccato
trumpet leading drums and bass. Soon Winston came in for Blanchard and twisted the
theme into fluid, flashy dimensions. Almazan took a lengthy riff, abstract and explosive.
In a photo finish, sax, trumpet, and piano shared the finale. Check out the Jazz
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Publishing Date: 03/02/2011