Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Bruce Barth


My review of Bruce Barth's new album, "Three Things of Beauty," was just published in The New York City Jazz Record.

Here's the first half:

The pianist Bruce Barth wrote six of the ten songs featured on his new album, including the title track, a dream-like waltz more noteworthy for its long, lyrical, cascading solos than its melody. Most of the tracks on this album are like that, shaped by the drama of a soloist’s decisions. In this case, Barth and the vibraphonist Steve Nelson make some really good ones.

They’re backed by bassist Ben Street and drummer Dana Hall, who put down sure, swinging rhythms. The music is relatively straightahead, but it doesn’t feel perfunctory nor do the musicians submit to the vice of jazz jam egalitarianism. This means that Nelson and Barth act as arbiters, in the forefront. (Street takes two short solos by this reviewer’s count while Hall is featured once toward the end of the second track, “Final Push”, a Barth original.)

Read the rest here (page 18).

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