The David Finck Quartet: Future Day
David Finck on Bass
Joe Locke on Vibes
Tom Ranier on Piano
Joe La Barbera on Drums
Jeremy Pelt on Trumpet
Bob Sheppard on Tenor Saxophone
Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
July 23, 2014
This CD is a top quality selection of compositions by members of this band, as well as illustrious jazz greats, like Wayne Shorter and Cedar Walton. Each of these four musicians, plus two guests on trumpet and tenor sax, create splendid melodies, interludes, and splashes of tonal surprises, as if they’ve been recording together for years. Not listed below, but enticing and excellent, was Four Flags by Bevon Manson, with Jeremy Pelt on trumpet and Bob Sheppard on tenor sax. This racing, rambunctious piece is also led by Joe Locke on vibes. The performing musicians and all composers involved in this project are certainly among la crème de la crème of today’s (and of recent years) gold-star jazz artists. They make this recording a must-have for any serious jazz aficionado.
#2 –New Valley – Composed by David Finck. David Finck’s composition, designed for a mesmerizing, piano-vibes theme, is rich in harmonies and mood. He was also highlighted in his lovely bass solo, accompanied by soft, fragmented piano and drum effects, by Tom Ranier and Joe La Barbera. Joe Locke’s vibes bring out the romanticism in the elegant theme, with a final flourish of echoing notes.
#5–Ballad For a Future Day – Composed by Roger Davidson. A rare, astounding composition is Roger Davidson’s piece, led by Mr. Ranier on piano and Mr. Locke on vibes. It opens mysteriously and magically, with vibes and piano shifting in resonance and clarity. Especially spellbinding is Mr. Davidson’s solo bass theme, played by Mr. Finck with his bow, adding soulfulness and serenity to the moment. Mr. Davidson has been reviewed favorably on these pages in years past for live performance and recordings.
#6 –Black Eyes – Composed by Wayne Shorter. This piece by the renowned Wayne Shorter gave Mr. La Barbera his showcase, with vivacious drums expanding a blazing vibes solo. Then, again, Mr. La Barbera made the most of his drums, before Mr. Ranier’s piano riff on the theme. Mr. Finck’s bass is prominent and earthy throughout. There’s detail in this work, with nuanced rhythms and intertwining improvisations. .
#12 –Firm Roots – Composed by Cedar Walton. In Cedar Walton’s piece, everyone gets a spotlight. There’s verve and fervor in this final track, and Joe La Barbera’s extensive drum solo makes a sensational splash. Joe Locke’s vibes and Tom Ranier’s piano are each featured in solo, thrilling momentum. Each rapid trill of notes is energetic and crisp. David Finck’s bass solo has its own deep theme, a languorous interlude.