32 year old Azerbaijan bassist Teymur Phell has been one of the most sought after musicians in recent years, taking his incredible skills on his 6-string F bass to work with such acts as Arturo Sandoval, Daniella Cotten, Mike Stern, Leni Stern, Kevin Salem, Oz Noy, and many others. Here he is with his latest solo album Master Volume, and he's brought quite the cast with him, which includes Mike Stern (guitar), Dennis Chambers (drums), Chad Lefkowitz Brown (tenor sax), Nitzan Gavrieli (keyboards), Lionel Cordew (drums), Iai Kriss (flute), Albert Leusink (trumpet), Brian Bonvissuto (trombone), Wisam Khoury (darbuka), and Daniel Sadownick (percussion). High powered, melodic jazz-fusion is the name of the game here, the album featuring plenty of jaw dropping musical passages that allow Phell and his fellow musicians to really shine.
Just check out the leaders leathery, melodic lead lines on the vibrant opener "Zero to Sixty", which showcases his supreme chops but also accomplished writing style. "Papano Kimono" is noteworthy for some blazing solo spots from Stern & Chambers, a jet fueled fusion romp that totally cooks from start to finish, which leads into the brief but dazzling bass solo piece "Old Window". The title cut is another daring fusion romp stacked with sizzling solos and tasty melodies, including some wild synth passages from Gavrieli, Phell filling in not only the deep bass grooves but also some cool 'almost guitar' -like funky rhythmic vamps, plus a blazing lead bass solo. "Worth the Wait" is an upbeat funky jazz piece with some Latin flavors, sax, flute, horns, and piano all figuring into the mix, and both Stern & Chambers return for the bluesy sizzle of "Unfinished Business", a stinging solo from the guitarist is followed by Phell's nimble run before all the musicians roll out a complex arrangement to end the tune. "Heyvanhana" is another impressive solo bass excursion from Phell, followed by the Weather Report/Jaco Pastorius inspired "Sweet Sweep", the yearning, melodic "Chances Are", and the majestic bass/drums/piano jazz trio finale "Blues for Who?", a real classic sounding piece that's a nice way to end this highly enjoyable album.
Teymur Phell is one talented guy, and with his very capable friends he's created a very fun & musically appealing album here with Master Volume. This is a bass player we are going to be hearing about for years to come.
1. Zero to Sixty
2. Papano Kimono (feat. Mike Stern & Dennis Chambers)
3. Old Window
4. Master Volume
5. Worth the Wait
6. Unfinished Business (feat. Mike Stern & Dennis Chambers)
8. Sweet Sweep
9. Chances Are
10. Blues for Who?