Tom Brigandi

After Hours

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Bass player Tom Brigandi has corralled the band from his Late Night New York album into the recording studio for his second album. The band, really a quintet, remains the same with one exception. Trumpet player Joe Magnarelli joins the group, replacing sax player Joe "Hardcore" Carello. The nature of the play list hasn't changed much from the initial outing. It's still an agreeable blend of original material with jazz and pop standards. First-rank hard bop tenor player Eric Alexander continues to carry much of the load. But this time around, bop-oriented pianist Dino Losito gets more play on such cuts as a feverish rendition of Joe Zawinul's "Young and Fine." While only on three cuts, trumpeter Magnarelli takes advantage of what's given him as on another Zawinul piece, "One for Newk," in honor of Brooklyn Dodger pitcher of the 1950s and 1960s Don Newcombe. Arrangements and improvisational excursions continue to be inventive and invigorating. Brigandi starts "Candy" with a statement of the melody opening the door for Magnarelli followed by Losito. The band is also no slouch with a ballad. Alexander's way with "I Fall in Love Too Easily" is one of the highlights of the session. The playing for each tune averages more than eight minutes, meaning that there is a thorough exploration of all extemporizing potential without the team or any of their members running out of things to say or repeating something already stated. Brigandi and band have not been affected by the so-called sophomore slump. To the contrary, the playing on the second release is ear-catching, stimulating, and recommended.

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