Counterclockwise

COMPOSERS: Bobby Previte
LABELS: Palmetto
PERFORMER: Bobby Previte & Bump
CATALOGUE NO: PM 2091

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Having regrouped by retreating into neo-classicism in the Eighties, jazz reasserted itself in the Nineties by resorting to one of its classic strategies: extending hospitality to an extraordinary variety of other musics, adapting and assimilating them. The music was thus able to emerge in the new millennium as unashamedly polystylistic, yet retaining its core strengths: interactive spontaneity and improvisational imagination. Consequently, an average month’s new issues will now run the stylistic gamut, from the strictly conventional, through the mildly eccentric, to the wholly individual.

Energy and fierce interaction are also hallmarks of drummer/ composer Bobby Previte’s work, and Counterclockwise is one of his most accessible and unequivocally enjoyable albums to date.

To the straightahead bustle of small-group jazz, Previte is wont to add snatches of funk rhythms, occasional forays into reggae and minimalism – even straightforward rock beats – and the result is a breezy, uplifting yet punchy sound, bristling with vim and vigour.

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Tenor player Marty Ehrlich, pianist Wayne Horvitz, trombonist Curtis Fowlkes and electric bassist Steve Swallow – all long-time associates – form a tight, exciting unit that is capable of imbuing Previte’s haunting themes with both rousing passion and considerable poignancy. F