Thursday, October 8, 2015

John Schott, Actual Trio

Today we have a fine electric guitarist, John Schott, and his Actual Trio (Tzadik 4011). This is the trio's debut recording, a studio affair with the threesome of long standing very much on it. Joining John is double bassist Dan Seamans and drummer John Hanes.

What hits you is the very nice loping-swinging of the band, the compositions and their sometimes intricate nature, and the way the band resonates with both the roots of jazz and the beyond qualities of avantness adding a little spice and color.

Seamans plays in a great ensemble walking style and can solo with good ideas. Hanes gives us subtle, first-rate time throughout.

And beyond all that is the guitar artistry of John Schott. He has his roots in Seattle, where he studied with Gary Peacock and Julian Priester. He was a founding member with Ben Goldberg with the group Junk Genius, an integral member of T.J. Kirk, leader of the 16-piece ensemble Diglossia, and a part of recordings by John Zorn, Tom Waits and Steven Bernstein. This is his third album.

Schott manages to channel the roots of jazz guitar while adding considerably to it with a vibrant sense of chordal color, line-constructing inventiveness and chops harnessed to the musical objective at hand, and a modal/changes/beyond sense that lays right and satisfyingly at all points.

There is no doubt that John Schott is a guitar master stylist. You can hear it in action from the beginning to the end of this set. I suspect there is much more to come from Maestro Schott. Meanwhile be sure to give this one your ears.

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