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Macdonald, Curtis: Community Immunity

Curtis Macdonald grew up in Canada but is now based out of New York City. He started performing at the age of nine and attended the Banff Centre for the Arts to hone his skill. He is a young but very talented musician and has just made his soon to released debut Community Immunity. He is a fabulous sax player and his new album is an exploration of modern sounding jazz with a decided angular approach to melody. While there are some immediate moments this album may not come to you quickly but when it does you will be richly rewarded.

Macdonald's small ensemble, eight additional musicians, are all fabulous players in their own right. I am not sure how long they have played together but they are as tight a unit as you are likely to hear combining composition and improvisation in a seamless approach that will ensure your rapt attention.

This is an excellent collection of songs beginning with the fine title track. The piano and sax weave their way through the soundscape, propelled by bassist Chris Tordini and Greg Ritchie on drums before dissonant piano excursions take the listener in a different direction and in the end it all makes perfect sense.

The ensemble really gets their groove on with the moody "Figmentum II" featuring the fine acoustic guitar of Travis Reuter. In the intense "Second Guessing" a flurry of saxophone sounds is matched by the equally enthralling piano with all of it bordering on the chaotic. This is modern jazz with an experimental edge.

In "Mosaic I and II", Macdonald offers a contrast of styles with the former taking a calmer approach with its muted sax intro exuding a kind of 'smokey' sound and the latter featuring twisting and turning piano lines giving an aura of dissonance while Ritchie exerts his magic on the cymbals.

One of the more melodic pieces is "The Imagineer", a slow and sultry jazz tune with pretty piano and an overall calming effect.

Curtis Macdonald has made an excellent debut with Community Immunity. He has a very bright future indeed. Released on Greenleaf Music.

Track listing:
1. Community Immunity (4:52)
2. Childhood Sympathy (2:52)
3. Figmentum II (5:20)
4. Second Guessing (5:16)
5. Mosaic I (4:01)
6. The Living Well (3:19)
7. Somnolence IV (4:00)
8. Mosaic II (4:24)
9. The Imagineer (3:07)
10. My Deal (4:48)

Added: April 18th 2011
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Artist's Official Site
Hits: 2678
Language: english

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