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Ryan Keberle & Catharsis, Into the Zone (Greenleaf Music)




Ryan Keberle & Catharsis, Into the Zone (Greenleaf Music)
CD Reviews

09/18/14
By Eric Saeger news@hippopress.com



Ryan Keberle & Catharsis, Into the Zone (Greenleaf Music)

Small combos like this four-piece aren’t representative of jazz trombonist Keberle’s bread-and-butter settings of larger orchestras, which have included Sufjan Stevens’ backup group and the Saturday Night Live orchestra. But catharsis, in the forms of a more manageable band size and less musical constraint, is what Keberle seeks in his downtime, so these are his most honest moments. The one-sheet from PR hints broadly at improvisation, although Keberle does take a writing credit for all the songs.  But there are times when the band members stretch out on scales that sound heavily kludged (“Cheryl”); if you can’t deal with Mingus you’ll want to skip this one, I have to be honest. It’s Keberle at his most vulnerable, toying with ‘60s-beatnik vibe in “Inevitable Blues,” ‘70s asphalt-prog in “Gallop” and lonesome quirk-torch in “Ballad of the Sad Young Men” (where singer Camila Meza and her hacky soprano finally become somewhat useful). A self-centered exercise, for sure, but some jazz wonks prefer nothing less. B- Eric W. Saeger





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