The young Berklee-born Mike MacAllister Group shows a lot more depth that their jazz-funk pedigree would indicate. On their self-released Urban Sprawl
, the snapping backbeats and slapping electric bass negotiate trickier-than-usual chords in zigzagging yet catchy themes and multi-section arrangements. Gerad O'Shea's saxophones deal the funk via David Sanborn and
Wayne Shorter, and the leader's guitar occasionally opens up for some Mahavishnu-esque blowing. What's more, we can't think of many fusionoid outfits that employ a marimba.
The MacAllisters kick off the Phoenix/FNX Sunday afternoon "Jazz at the Hatch" series
at the Hatch Memorial Shell, on the Esplanade, from 5-7 p.m. Diamond Life open. Call (781) 595-6200 for details.