JD Allen: saxophone; Gregg August: bass; Rudy Royston: drums.
Owner of a penetrating sound and an impressive technique, the saxophonist JD Allen turns his focus to the roots by picking some wrinkled old blues and giving them the necessary retouches to fit in the actual jazzistic landscape. Another saxophone player, Noah Preminger, has followed this same concept in “Dark Was The Night, Cold Was The Ground”, in which a few Delta blues got fresh rearrangements.
“Americana” is a respectable follow-up to “Graffiti”, Allen’s previous, and was also recorded with the glaring rhythm section composed of Gregg August on bass and Rudy Royston on drums. Powerful without being aggressive, Allen and his peers embark on irresistible grooves and strong dynamics that cause immediate empathy on the listener. Oscillating between beseeching and hard-hitting, the calls emitted by the leader’s tenor sax find consistent support in the pungent bass plucking and bowing of August, and in the laudable maneuvers of Royston, whose resolute drive and dry timbre feel quite fresh. The collective sounds simultaneously feisty, raw, and erudite.
01 – Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil ► 02 – Another Man Done Gone ► 03 – Cotton