Saxophonist/composer Jane Ira Bloom is one of the few (well-known, at least) established players to focus exclusively on the soprano - and she hasn't been shy about bringing electronic treatments to her horn, either. (Relax! There`s no concessions to commerciality at all.) Composition-wise, Bloom kind of reminds me of Andrew Hill (and Lee Konitz, a bit) in that they are rooted in the post-bop vocabulary yet there’s a lot of twists, turns and unpretentious quirks. As with Hill, freedom (i.e., avant garde-ness) is there - the proceedings never become a free-for-all - but she never loses any sense of recognizable structure all the while avoiding glib bebop clichés. Her latest album "Sometimes The Magic" is not a substantial departure from her previous discs - it has the same personnel as her previous CD "The Red Quartets" - while maintaining the same subtle, sophisticated group interplay and high level of musicianship. Bloom`s tone is steely yet limber, unsentimental and at the same time cordial. She also, thankfully, doesn't bury the listener with a barrage of notes - Bloom plays absolutely as much as she needs to. Mark Dresser is a superb bassist, as distinctive as Dave Holland or Richard Davis or Reggie Workman without ever 'sounding like' them. He is an equal participant here, as is drummer Bobby Previte. Pianist Vincent Bourgeyx is of the Bill Evans school of intense lyricism, and he also has some of Thelonious Monk's economy. If you seek brainy jazz played with quiet, subdued fervor, this disc is indubitably worth a shot.
Artist / Group Name:Jane Ira Bloom
CD Title:Sometimes The Magic
Musicians:Jane Ira Bloom, Mark Dresser, Bobby Previte, Vincent Bourgeyx