Monday, June 23, 2014

Rodrigo Amado, Wire Quartet

I don't think I am going out on a limb when I say that Rodrigo Amado is without a doubt one of the most exciting and innovative tenor saxophonists on the avant jazz scene in Europe today. It is so, to my mind. He's been racking up a discography of gem-after-gem (many covered here) and stands out as someone who has a clear direction and the facility and sound to make it all so.

He has a couple of new ones out that I'll cover on this page over the next several weeks. The first up is a foursome gathering named the Wire Quartet (Clean Feed 297).

It's a scorcher of a studio date, with Amado and his colleagues in full-forward mode. Joining Rodrigo are Manuel Mota on electric guitar, Hernani Faustino on double bass, and Gabriel Ferrandini on drums. If you follow the Portuguese scene you will recognize some or all of these names. They are players at or near the very top of their craft/art and they work together to give a dramatically free jazz dynamic throughout.

Everybody sounds great but it's Rodrigo that masters through the three segments, a master phraser-inventor with a rich tenor tone and poise. He sounds like a new "classic", though that may be a contradiction in terms. But no, the new can be the classic of now. It has to be because otherwise we are saying there is nothing being made of classic status today. And that just is not true.

So this is Rodrigo Amado right now--with three of the best on the Portuguese scene, all coming through with music that is meant to be a part of where we are. Right now. It is! Check this one out or miss out....

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