Saturday, May 12, 2018

Jonathan Hughes - Luna (2018)

As beguilingly understated as the very satellite it’s named for, Luna is an album of original jazz compositions by bassist, composer, and producer Jonathan Hughes. While there are plenty of moments to tastefully showcase his refined and fastidious bass playing — both as a soloist and an accompanist — Luna is first and foremost an ensemble piece, with contributions from Tim Clarke (trumpet), Harry Graser (piano), Rob Lynch (drums) and more. With finesse and aplomb, Hughes reinterprets a contemporary jazz sound, weaving in elements of bossa nova, funk, and fusion. The exquisite ballad “Mauveine” is as sophisticated as it is plaintive, while “Planet Earth” evokes a noirish moonscape that would not sound entirely out of place with Hughes’s early ambient compositions. The album’s melancholic conclusion, “Canaveral,” is a neo-soul-infused waltz, which is to say that Luna is an album about exploration and invention. It is as much about jazz as it is about art and aesthetics. Luna is available on Bandcamp, iTunes, Google Play, Amazon, Spotify, and many other digital retailers.

1. Spaceman 05:16
2. Luna 05:51
3. Umbra 05:44
4. Stacking the Stone 05:38
5. Parisian Nightsuit 05:22
6. Mauveine 06:44
7. Helios 05:08
8. Planet Earth 06:19
9. The Waters Of Mars 06:04
10. Canaveral 04:31

Dee Adams (vocals)
John Bacon (drums)
Kelly Bucheger (tenor saxophone)
Tim Clarke (trumpet)
Mike Criscione (guitar)
Mike DiGiacomo (tenor saxophone)
Harry Graser (pianos)
Jonathan Hughes (bass, guitar, glockenspiel)
Guillermo Izquierdo (guitar)
Rob Lynch (drums and percussion)
Lenny Pommefrite (tuba)
Joe Rozler (electric piano)
Ray Skalski (trombone)