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By Mostly Other People Do the Killing
Joyous sound. Characterful solos, no translucent chest puffing, this is fully fledged swagger. Glorious in small doses.
Hot Cup Records is proud to release Slippery Rock, the fifth studio album by the acclaimed quartet, Mostly Other People Do the Killing (MOPDtK). This new group of compositions penned by bassist/composer/bandleader Moppa Elliott, were inspired by a lengthy immersion in the smooth jazz recordings of the late 1970s and 1980s. While many purists, academics, fans, and the members of this ensemble dismiss much of this music as superficial, commercial, and pandering, there are musical elements present that are unique to the genre. In order to expand the range and repertoire of the ensemble, Elliott extracted certain idiomatic phrases, harmonies and embellishments to incorporate into his own compositions.
Several consistent elements of Elliott's compositional style are conserved here, such as rhythmic displacement and lyrical melodies, as well as the practice of naming the tunes after towns in his native Pennsylvania. While the source material may derive from the most unlikely of places, the performances are undoubtedly by MOPDtK. Rigid structural elements are broken down at will, anachronistic changes in tempo, feel, and meter occur frequently, and the members of the ensemble capitalize on almost a decade of collective performance as a quartet. This long ensemble history provides the members of the group with a confidence and rapport rarely found in today's jazz ensembles. As always, references to a wide range of styles, performers and composers are present in the music, ranging from Haydn to Kool and the Gang, Arthur "Guitar Boogie" Smith to Philip Glass.
Peter Evans - trumpet, piccolo trumpet, slide trumpet;
Jon Irabagon - tenor, alto, soprano and sopranino saxophones, flute;
Moppa Elliott - bass;
Kevin Shea - drums, percussion.
January 26, 2013
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