Guitarist Bruce Saunders performs a set of his complex originals on 8X5. Saunders has a warm tone and his music challenges and inspires the other musicians. Adam Kolker's style on tenor is a bit reminiscent of Michael Brecker (particularly on "Two Piers") without being derivative. Trombonist Alan Ferber blends in well and the interplay between Saunders, bassist Mike McGuirk and drummer Mark Ferber keeps the music stimulating and unpredictable. There is plenty of variety in tempos and moods, with "Grim" being purposely downbeat, "Another Happy Drinking Song" being properly ragged, "Half Right" managing to be both complex and accessible and "Litany" having both a difficult set of chord changes and a joyous feel. Overall 8X5 is an intriguing and well-played set of modern jazz.
AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow