Thursday, August 2, 2012

New Zion Trio, Fight Against Babylon

Want to hear something very different? The New Zion Trio's Fight Against Babylon (Veal 007) comes through with something that will put you in unexpected places. It's a piano trio with a different approach. Jamie Saft is at the piano and Rhodes, Larry Grenadier plays contrabass, and Craig Santiago is at the drums.

It's a music of space and solidity they play. Starting with the basic rhythmic and riff concepts of classic reggae, and often working in minor modes that reflect a wide Jewish stylistic heritage, they create a music that expands outward and inward.

The rhythm section propels the sound outward with rock-steady reggae sensibilities; and Jamie Saft lets the music breathe inward with block chords and musical commentary on piano that has the sense of space and form of Ahmad Jamal in his classic years, maybe a touch of Red Garland, a pinch of the Necks in one of their zones, and flat-out originality.

It's a remarkable recording. I have not heard the like. And it makes for a beautiful listen.


  1. Hey hey hey!

    Here's an interview with Jamie about this record:

    Yours from my Jazz Or Bust Tour,