all-about-jazz – Dan Bilawsky

Can jazz stay the inventive course while remaining true to its swinging precedents and historical framework(s)? This record makes the argument that it can.

Toronto-based saxophonist Johnny Griffith has put together a program of original music that’s firmly grounded in tradition, yet his approaches aren’t rigidly dogmatic in nature; in other words, this record speaks to the past, but it’s not another present-day date that’s simply dressed in yesteryear’s fashion(s). Slamming grooves and swing rhythms share living space (“The Kuleshascope”), nuanced exploration has its place (“Cinders”), strong personal statements can be heard throughout, and the band artfully creates and surfs the dynamic waves within this music.

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