All is Gladness in the Kingdom
Fight the Big Bull
Jason Scott tenor and alto saxophones, clarinet / J.C.Kuhl tenor saxophone, clarinet / John Lilley tenor saxophone / Steven Bernstein trumpet, slide trumpet / Bob Miller trumpet / Reggie Pace trombone / Bryan Hooten trombone / Matt White guitar / Cameron Ralston bass / Brian Jones percussion / Pinson Chanselle trap kit / Eddie Prendergast electric bass
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Guitarrist, composer and arranger Matt White is back with his unique big band, Fight the Big Bull. And he brings with him a very special guest, Steven Bernstein, who trumpets all the way, contributes with a couple of scores, is the co-arranger, and also the co-producer. We feel his presence in every corner of the music, but this is, undoubtedly, a project coming from White’s creativity and vision. Once again, there’s direct or undirect references to Charles Mingus, and specially to the album “The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady”, but synthesized in a personal and up-to-date project. It goes from unison melodies to free playing very near organized chaos, and from groovy situations to contrapuntal marvels which certainly would make Bach proud. The good spirited, but ironic, “All is Gladness in the Kingdom” has a particularly interesting focus: the relations constructed between the reed/brass section (Jason Scott, J.C. Kuhl, John Lilley, Bernstein, Bob Miller, Reggie Pace, and Bryan Hooten), and Matt White’s electric guitar, above a powerful rhythmic base sustained by the percussionists Brian Jones and Pinson Chanselle and by the contrabassist Cameron Ralston – in one track reinforced by Eddie Prendergast and his electric bass. Everything sounds like a machine going nuts, and that’s wonderful.