RESONANCE — DropzoneJazz Records 2005.
Higher Ground – Stevie Wonder
Manic Depression – Jimi Hendrix
Tadpole – John Hart
I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For – U2
Spanish Castle Magic Prelude – Jimi Hendrix
Spanish Castle Magic – Jimi Hendrix
Pagan Poetry – Bjork
Hekete – Kermit Driscoll
Bemsha Swing – Monk
Pastime Paradise – Stevie Wonder
Vinnie Cutro – Trumpet
John Hart – Guitar
Kermit Driscoll – Acoustic Bass
Karl Latham – Drums.
By Paul Sakion
Karl Latham is well known for his interest in and talent for many styles of music. In Resonance, many of these styles are represented through a rearrangement of tunes from well known rock artists. This leads to unusual and thought provoking results. For example, U2’s, “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” is used almost as a ballad to shift the mood and provide a smooth transition into the more challenging Hendrix piece that follows, Spanish Castle Music. This arrangement is also unique while still being recognizable. Hendrix’s work comes across intact with a strong back beat providing a foundation for some excellent trumpet work by Cutro.
Other pieces such as Bjork’s “Pagan Poetry,” defy categorization and can only be enjoyed for what they are, in this case, another beautiful trumpet / guitar ballad. Finally, Resonance’s last two tracks are Monk’s “Bemsha Swing” and Wonder’s “Pastime Paradise.” “Bemsha Swing” is a wonderfully twisted arrangement with Hendrix-like guitar solos and “Pastime Paradise” becomes a pleasant Latin samba swing. It’s as if Latham has created a sampler album of his styles.
Resonance must be given some listening time to be appreciated. It’s complex and varied interpretations force the listener to think about each piece as an individual artistic expression rather than a cohesive album and if you are looking for a new sonic landscape in your jazz world, Resonance, will not disappoint.