Ron Bosse

Emotion & Intellect

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Emotion and Intellect is an appropriate title for this post-bop CD because Boston guitarist Ron Bosse and his group Pursuance really do provide a balance of those two things. To be sure, this is an intellectual recording; those who aren't seasoned post-bop enthusiasts might have a hard time comprehending Bosse's complex pieces, which range from the probing title song to the reflective "Stella Luna" and the angular "Flail Watch." The music that Bosse and Pursuance members Dave Barraza (who plays a John Coltrane-influenced tenor sax), Will Hudgins (vibes), Paul Beaudry (bass), and Rob Egan (drums) offer is definitely on the cerebral side, and the Bostonians don't go out of their way to be accessible. But those who can accept Emotion and Intellect on its own terms will find that cerebral doesn't necessarily mean cold and that Bosse does, in fact, bring emotion and warmth to his guitar solos. This isn't an album in which a group of unimaginative "Young Lions" play the same old standards the same old way; Miles Davis' "So What" is the only tune on the CD that Bosse didn't write, and the guitarist manages to breath new life into that overdone standard. Characterized by surprising tempo changes, Bosse's take on "So What" is certainly unorthodox. Emotion and Intellect falls short of being innovative, but it does have a certain freshness and indicates that Bosse (who was 27 when the disc came out) has a lot of potential.