Review by: Pete Pardo
Bassist Joseph Patrick Moore’s latest album Live in 05 is a fun and spirited jazz-fusion collection of songs recorded at This House Rocks in Atlanta, Georgia on April 2nd, 2005. Moore has been busy over the last few years, putting out a few albums of his own as well as appearing on various other artist’s recordings. Here, he and his crack band of Al Smith on keyboards, drummer Jon Chalden, EWI player Al Mcspadden, and percussionist Emrah Kotan really give a five performance on eleven tracks of smokin’ and funky fusion, melodic cool jazz, and progressive tinged improvisations.
Moore himself is a very smooth player with some serious chops, whether he is laying down deep grooves or lean melodic solos on electric, fretless, or double bass. Fans of Victor Bailey, Gary Willis, John Pattitucci, Stanley Clarke, and Marcus Miller, will instantly dig Moore’s energetic style. Although there are plenty of great bass solos on the album, the live setting affords his bandmates to also get in on the action, especially keyboard player Smith, who launches into a wild synth frenzy on the funky “Gypsy Moon Father Sun”. He also provides a nice melodic foundation in which Moore can dig into some serious popping bass lines on the light jazz piece “Fall”. Drummers will love the percussion/drum spotlight “Drum Dance”, which allows Chalden and Kotan some room to show off before the song segues into the fine “Datz It (version 2005)”, a song with plenty of funk bass melodies and 70′s styled electric piano.
Ultimately it comes down to compositions, and Moore is no slouch in that department. These are all memorable tunes with catchy melodies, which go along just fine with the solid chops of the band. So if you in the mood for some well played and melodic modern jazzfusion, you can’t go wrong with Live in 05.
3. Prayer of Solitude
4. Chief Dagga
5. Gypsy Moon Father Sun
6. Bless You
8. Bebop Charlie
10. Drum Dance
11. Datz It (version 2005)
Review by: Mark Sabbatini
When an album opens with a quirky reinterpretation of the 1980s hit “Down Under” it’s safe to assume the artist is looking to have a good time. Joseph Patrick Moore succeeds to a degree in bringing listeners along on Drum And Bass Society, Vol. 1, even if the cast of players doesn’t quite let its collective hair down enough to make this a consistent fun fest throughout. It’s an all-over-the-map jam band romp where nobody’s the life of the party, but almost everyone has something interesting to say if you focus on them amidst the din.
The fifteen tracks include seven originals by the bass player, plus reinterpretations of hits by groups such as Phish, The Specials, and The Fixx. It’s a radical departure from Moore’s 2002 multi-tracked solo album Alone Together, with the new release featuring more than twenty musicians and only a couple of songs where Moore solos—his arranging of this huge cast is the main contribution.
The most unfortunate moment is Moore’s slow reggae treatment of “Down Under,” which might have been a readily identifiable crowd-pleaser, but instead comes across as unimaginative and badly at odds with the album’s overall beat. The vocals are played straight and the instrumentalists avoid anything notable for a radio-safe four minutes. The concept works much better on “One Thing Leads To Another” as one of the wind players takes over immediately on flute and doesn’t let go throughout a peppery string of phrases. It’s hardly the inspired madness of the Bad Plus, but is a plus rather than a minus to the album.
Speaking of inspired madness, some of the better moments of it occur on the hybrid world/funk/whatever collage of “Cheesefrog Funk.” “Groove Messenger” delivers a decent bit of fusion in the style of Miles Davis, who Moore cites as one of his big influences. And the scope of variety can be seen on the rather flute-heavy New Agey “Rain Dance” and the almost mainstream jazz of “Herbie,” a tribute to pianist Herbie Hancock.
The CD, released on Moore’s Blue Canoe Records, has a $9 list price, and two songs, “Jamband Express” and “Groove Messenger (The Story of Jazztronica),” are available as free MP3 downloads from Moore’s web site and online vendors such as Amazon.com .
Moore has proven a solid player in a variety of settings since appearing on the recording scene in the mid 1990s, and this album ranks well among his releases. Fans wanting to hear him in this setting will likely be satisfied and new listeners of such music will find it worthwhile to at least investigate the free previews. Those wanting to hear his playing will find Alone Together a better and also intriguing bet, since the overdubbing includes unexpected sounds such as percussion generated by tapping on his bass.
Review by Todd S. Jenkins
Style: Fusion/Progressive Rock
Versatile Atlanta-based bassist Moore’s new album is packed with fun grooves from the word go. His technique and ideas are steeped in the electric bass developments of the past thirty years, but with a fresh contemporary edge.
The band fries up a hot passel of funk on track #1. The horns are hot and deep into the boogie, Moore’s envelope-filtered bass adds a Bootsy Collins vibe, and Aquarium Rescue Unit guitarist Jimmy Herring tempers the sauce with a cupful of hot bluesiness. Tracks #2 and #5 give the expected nod to Jaco; track #3 begins with thumping worthy of Marcus Miller and evolves into pretty double-stops. These tracks especially flaunt Moore’s studio-quality chops.
Though most of their names are unfamiliar, Moore’s sidemen are complementary, empathetic and well chosen. Pianist Bill Anschell lays down a Ramsey Lewis-style groove on #7 and Buzz Amato boots the organ around the floor before trumpeter Vance Thompson enters with soulful lyricism. Moore closes the disc with covers of classic songs by Led Zeppelin and Kansas. The former is driven smoothly along by Moore’s taut harmonics and fingerstyle melodicism, while the latter floats on an unexpectedly successful Latin jazz beat. Palmer Williams‘ vocals on the last tune are notably fluid and enjoyable. Joseph Patrick Moore is definitely a talent worth hearing, and this well-made disc will be of particular interest to electric bass aficionados.
Track listing: Datz It; Ashes To Ashes; Big Butt Bass; Soulcloud; Pause #3; Mumphis Cosanostra; Cosmic Dance; Going To California; Dust In The Wind.
Personnel: Moore, acoustic and electric basses, shaker; Jimmy Herring, guitar; Yonrico Scott, Phillip Smith, drums; Bill Anschell, Bob Marbach, piano; Frank “Buzz” Amato, keyboards; Vance Thompson, trumpet and flugelhorn; Stan Cherednik, alto and soprano saxes; Bryan Lopes, tenor sax; Palmer Williams Jr., vocals.