I have never heard of Steve Hass. I'm sure that I have heard Steve Hass play not knowing who he was, but nevertheless, I'm not a fan. That is, until now.I listened to this album not realizing that Steve is actually a drummer. The drum performances on this album are amazing, but aside from the 2 tracks that have drum solos, they are very understated and musical. Leaving more attention to the beautiful arrangements, composition, and production.
This is the best jazz CD I have purchased in the last 10 years. Listening to it from beginning to end never bores my ears with monotony or too many notes. It's an easy listen yet it's filled with depth and emotion. Who is this Steve Hass? Well, later I did my research and discovered he's an accomplished drummer in many genres of music. A master to say the least. His CD proves that he's also an accomplished producer, and arranger. Re-creating some of the classics he covered can be disastrous. To be honest, I like his versions as much if not more than the originals. Sarah Mclachlan's Do What You Have To Do is better than the original to my ears. Skylark has a great trashy drum loop, spacious electric guitars, and big roomy drums along with Janis Siegel's beautiful K'D Lang-ish vocal. Noah Soloman's voice on the African/Arabic percussion interludes remind me of Peter Gabriel's "Passion".
I highly recommend this CD There's something here for everyone.