Friday, March 13, 2015

Sour Grapes, Jeff Platz, Jim Hobbs, Luther Gray, Timo Shanko

Some albums get heard once, I listen and know they are "good," I file them in sequence for further listening and review and then subject myself to further bombardment from 100s of albums until it is time for the more detailed listens and review. It is sometimes in that final phase that I realize that "good" is really very good indeed. Such a sleeper I post on today. In the final phase of listening I came to appreciate the music much more greatly than on initial hearing. That is the album Sour Grapes (Glitch 003) a Boston session featuring Jeff Platz, Jim Hobbs, Luther Gray and Timo Shanko.

It is a rough-and-tumble quartet of real strength. Jeff Platz is on electric guitar, Jim Hobbs plays alto, Luther Gray does the drumming and Timo Shanko is on electric bass.

This is open-form freedom of a very electric avant jazz-rock sort. Everybody works together here to come up with exceptional sound mixes that are more than a sum of the parts, though the parts themselves are no joke either.

Bassist Timo makes a big contribution to the sound with both a rhythm anchorage and as a colorist-soloist in the mix. He blends very well with the outstanding guitar outness of Jeff Platz, who is all over the place with very outside hipness that has percussive crack as well as a fine way with a line and harmonic good avant sense. Jeff comes through monstrously well. Jim Hobbs on alto gets some scorching work into the four-way. And Luther Gray outdoes himself spanning the space between rocking, swinging and bash freedom--and that is perfect for what is needed.

I can't begin to describe this music--except to say it is very much a situation where all four are mutually attuned and say something strong, strongly electric, strongly outside, strongly fired up, yet at times too, very subtle.

Guitarists and bassists need to hear these two stringers work together, but it is a quartet where everybody puts in the smarts, their creativity and their free-spirit muses.

If you respond to creative electric outness you should not miss this one. Whooo!

And so the end of the week is here. I hope to return with my blogs Monday but I may be forced to exit the stage for a while. The posts are all going to stay up but my fate is unclear. Live well, fare well, and prosper. And RIP Mr. Spock.

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