Roy Dunlap – Piano
Marcus Parsley – Trumpet
Alex Mincek – Tenor
Jeff Hanley – Bass
Bill Campbell – Drums
Recorded Brooklyn NY 2007
This record starts with a great track called Brawlex,
which features everyone in the band. All are excellent soloists and
it made for a very happy and musical sound. "This is for me",
I thought, but then I heard track two which is called The Mouse
and the Clock and it sounded like background music for a nightmare
Fortunately Snip’s Blues took me away from the
nightmare and into the real world of good swinging jazz, from this
very talented bunch of musicians. Roy Dunlap is a very impressive
pianist and composer; all the tracks on the album are his compositions.
Who is the phantom guitarist? He does not receive any credits, but
he is another fine talent! Alex Mincek is a fine tenor sax player,
who unfortunately has a penchant for slipping off into the weird sounds
business at times.
I was very impressed with the precision with which
this quite complex music is played; these guys certainly know how
to get round their instruments. If you read the sleeve note, however,
they have all played with the very best and therefore collectively
they are the very best, so I should not be surprised.
I am writing this review whilst listening to the record
and therefore I am able to comment on the tracks as I hear them. The
playing on Filibuster is again exciting; drummer Bill Campbell
drives everything along and he too is a major contributor to each
track. With Providence is an attractive ballad, with a sad
kind of melody reminiscent of many songs from the Great American Song
Book. Roy’s piano playing is very expressive and the work of Marcus
Parsley on trumpet is first class.
Jeff Hanley’s double bass leads us into Big Man
Down; he like everyone in this band is an important voice. The
track, however, was not to my taste, back to nightmare time!
The Latin groove of Verdadero is very much to
my liking and overall this is an interesting album, played by a group
of musicians out of the top drawer of jazz performers. I only hope
that the ratio of impressive to nightmare does not move in the black
direction! These guys are too good to waste their time on that stuff!