Sunday, February 5, 2017

Album Review: Matt Otto and Andy Ehling- Reunion

The reticent Kansas City musician Matt Otto continues to verify his rarefied talent.  Reunion, the new album he co-leads with the Bay Area saxophonist Andy Ehling, is sublime. 

As on their 2008 album Returning, the duo successfully updates the deceptively transgressive West Coast sound associated with Jimmy Giuffre. 

Thorny tracks including “Twain” and “Lenigh” intimate dissonance, but the insistence of a stalwart rhythm section prevents the saxophonists from venturing too far afield. 

The grooves laid down by bassist Ben Leifer and drummer Brad Williams could be mistaken for the work of internationally acclaimed tandems like Harish Raghavan and Nasheet Waits.  Playing a Fender Rhodes, the New York based keyboardist Leonard Thompson adds complementary splashes of impressionistic colors.

Subtly luminous, Reunion may be even more remarkable than Soliloquy, the excellent album Otto released in 2016.

(Original image by Plastic Sax.)

No comments: