CD Review – The New Cool with Nathan East and Bob James…
I have a “Short List” of the most iconic bassists of our time and Nathan East is among my top players!
You can imagine my excitement when I got the advance copy (release date Sept, 19, 2015) of Nathan’s upcoming CD, “The New Cool,” in my hands. Here is a teaser:
I was curious as to the driving forces behind this project and found this clip:
“The New Cool” is basically a Jazz Duet album with Bob James on piano and Nathan East on upright bass and the occasional support of strings, vocals, percussion and more. The entire project was recorded in Nashville, with state-of-the-art Yamaha gear.
The eleven song set-list is a combination of original compositions, along with a few select classics. It is interesting how this work departs from our familiar acquaintance with Bob and Nathan as members of the renown Jazz quartet Foreplay.
As is often the case, trying to describe a CD of this stature, track-by-track, does not do it justice and so I will give the the bird’s-eye view. The general feel of this project is more along the smooth Jazz vein, where most of the tracks are very calming with a few of a more upbeat nature interspersed. The arrangements and artistic interpretations are exquisite and the musical genre’s of each track are diverse and unique in their own sense.
Here is a sample of “Turbulence”:
The bass work is precise, meticulous, intricate and flawless as one would expect from Nathan. I did find myself wishing that the bass levels were engineered a tad higher so that I might hear more of the details, but I really enjoyed the riff’s I could catch. Nathan really lays down a tight groove and does the job perfectly, as you would expect of such a seasoned bassist.
The piano work was equally impressive and the blend of the two masterful musicians yields an excellent, finely polished result. The musical skills of Bob James are unequivocally top notch.
Musical events of this caliber are truly rare. If you are a Jazz fan, you must get your hands on this album as soon as you can… you will not be disappointed!