by Sylvannia Garutch
Every generation there are musicians that standout, those that show a versatility in their playing and offer a robust sound and spark that ignites the listener. In the saxophone category, two such names seem to continuously rise to the top. Joshua Redman and now Troy Roberts. Two-time Grammy nominated Australian saxophonist and composer Troy Roberts was clearly also recognized by two other veteran jazz outfits Joey DeFrancesco’s new quartet, ‘The People,’ Joey DeFrancesco Trio and The Jeff ‘Tain’ Watts Quartet, as he is a member of both touring groups and keeps a daunting schedule of travel across the globe.
Nu-Jive Perspective is Roberts 8th record as a leader and this outing is getting back to the beginning of Roberts recording roots with his longtime brothers in music Tim Jago: guitar; Silvano Monasterios: keyboard; Eric England: bass; and Dave Chiverton on drums. The group is electric, literally and allegorically, their sound is deeply based in groove and has a distinctly contemporary overtone. Roberts’ tone is darkly hued in rich flavorsome coloring and his ability to build upon motifs is stunning, not to mention when he wants to let go, his bombastic adventuresome flurries are still rooted firmly in the melody making the listen even more winsome.