Brian Bromberg: You Know That Feeling
didn't read it in the CD booklet, you'd never know. Brian Bromberg, already recognized as one of this generation's leading practitioners of the bass, plays a variety of instruments including the not only the standard fretted electric bass and acoustic bass violin, but also the piccolo bass, the tenor bass (an oxymoron, isn't it?), and perhaps most interesting, the stereo piccolo with panning strings. But this isn't a tasteless, self-aggrandizing exhibition of technique and chops, it's all about the melody. Brian writes in the booklet notes that as he's matured, the melody and the feelings underlying a piece of music have become more important, and this sentiment is borne out in the music on this CD. This is a truly engaging and enjoyable set of tunes in the contemporary jazz vein.
Two non-original vocal cuts are included in a nod to radio programmers, Earth, Wind & Fire's "September" and Human League's "Human." They're pleasant enough, but the rest of the album just gets better and better. On all the other tunes, Bromberg displays considerable talent as a composer as well as a bassist. There's some exciting up-tempo funk, some smoother R&B-flavored grooves, and lots of other flavors of jazz, rock, and everything in between, but it's all good. Special guests include Jeff Lorber, Gregg Karukas, Rob Mullins, Joe Sample and Mitch Forman on keyboards; Gary Meek and Everette Harp on saxophones; and Rick Braun on trumpet.