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Jeff Pifher and Socrates’ Trial: Anthem

Jeff Pifher is a wonderful young saxophonist based out of Los Angeles. He formed his band Socrates’ Trial in 2018 and has released three albums in a relatively short time, including two in 2019; Alternate Futures/Past Realities (reviewed on this site) and their latest titled Anthem.

Much like Alternate Futures, Anthem is a grandiose affair incorporating different stylistic elements and venturing into classical, pop, cinema and rock, all under the umbrella of jazz. The string section consisting of eight violinists, three violists and four cellists adds a great deal to the band’s sound. The bombastic string arrangement in the thirteen minute title track is most notable in this regard. Lush strings and keyboards add symphonic touches as tasty saxophone adds beautiful melodies. His sax solo is absolutely sublime as are Misha Bigos’ fluid piano motifs. I would be remiss not to mention the outstanding choir-like wordless vocals that further adds to the overall lushness. On “Equal Station” the cinematic ambience is fully realized, this could be from a movie soundtrack. Symphonic edged jazz with short, tasteful bursts of lead guitar. The drum work of Corey Coverstone is a high point as well. A slightly darker vibe gives “For The Rectitude Of Our Intentions” a feeling of unease and wistfulness. The guitar solo from Colin Cook is quite beautiful as it builds from jazz to grandiose symphonic edged rock. Pifher’s sax solo in “Homage” delivers one of the albums’ most creative moments.

Throughout the album you will hear symphonic crescendos, lovely soloing and richly scored arrangements. A highly rewarding jazz album that encompasses a number of genres all the while retaining pure class. Very much recommended.

Track Listing:
1. Prudence
2. Equal Station
3. Anthem
4. For The Rectitude Of Our Intentions
5. Homage
6. Peace Friends
7. Patience
8. For: Us
9. New Guards

Added: January 6th 2020
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Artist's Offcial Site
Hits: 507
Language: english

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