Monday, May 8, 2017

Chris Greene Quartet, Boundary Issues

Tenor-soprano jazzman Chris Greene wants to cross through stylistic barriers. He and his quartet set about to do just that on Boundary Issues (Single Malt 011). What we get is an album of contemporary jazz that shows its hard-bop roots and adopts the rhythms of our current world to the needs of Greene's historical-contemporary explorations. His beautifully open horn tenor sound and ravishing soprano are unleashed and focused to ride across nicely burning grooves, whether it be the reggae pulsations inherent in his arrangement of Silver's classic "Nica's Dream," or the funkified or swinging takes on standards, selected contemporary jazz gems from folks like Kenny Kirkland, or Greene's own originals. The band stands out while Greene lets loose.

His sidemen are the right ones for this date. Damian Espinosa on piano and keys, Marc Piane on acoustic and electric bass, and Steve Corley on drums have what it takes to motor the music along, add their own personalities and solo effectively. Greene stands out in the end as a player of finesse and soul, thoroughly immersed in his version of the contemporary style.

The set is together and in the end a beautiful listen. Greene is something new and worthwhile. Hear him.

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