Album Review: Look For the Light from Jeff Reed
Artist: Jeff Reed
Label: Stricker Street Records
Jeff Reed’s jazz quintet is brimming with ingenuity and rapid counterpoints on his latest CD Look For the Light. Leading on acoustic bass, Reed is accompanied by Sean Jones on trumpet,Todd Marcus on bass clarinet, Jonathan Epley on guitar, and Eric Kennedy on drums. The 5-piece engage in ample counter movements as each musician provides feedback to one another’s assertions. The swift exchanges manifest into a complementing chaos, mirroring what listeners would hear during an open jam session.
Kennedy’s drums flare boldly across “Tricotism” as Jones’ trumpet and Marcus’ bass clarinet sprinkle the track with bursts of flickering toots. The composition is densely populated with the musicians various remarks, inserting counter phrases from Epley on guitar. The quintet cools down to a leisurely pace along “Paragon” as Reed’s bass plucks radiantly, wielding a soft swing buoyancy. The heavy wobble of Reed’s bass notes ambling across “Conversion” is canvassed by the spiky treads of Epley’s guitar and Jones’ trumpet. The instruments are cleared for Jones’ vibrant solo as he is accompanied by the splashing blitz of Kennedy’s dexterous drumming, proceeded by Marcus’ ingenious solo moves on the bass clarinet.
The title track is a malleable stream of various insertions by the musicians, each telling a tale in their individual melodic motifs and spurts of improvisation. The quintet’s free form of communication continues with the jubilation emanating through “A Look Inside,” as the musicians sonic pellets scurry and are tossed liberally. Reed’s glissando’s on the bass permeate a luminous liveliness partnered with Kennedy’s energetic drumming as the horns dive into the cheery tussle. “Quasimodo” takes another turn on the recording with the unbridled furls of Jones’ trumpet promending an exuberant frolic.
There is life in every track on Look For the Light. The release marks the first endeavor for bassist Jeff Reed as a leader. An assortment of jazz standards and original material, the recording displays expressions of joy, contemplation, and open communication. Each track is bountiful of activity as the musicians counter one another, extending on one another’s assertions swiftly and creating an environment of open dialogue.
Jeff Reed – Bass
Sean Jones – Trumpet
Todd Marcus – Bass clarinet
Jonathan Epley – Guitar
Eric Kennedy – Drums