Lost Dogs


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Lost Dogs is a quartet founded by bass player Ron Brendle, with the unusual instrumental grouping of two saxophones, bass, and drums. This departs from Brendle's usual setting, his trio that typically features pianist Frank Kimbrough. But there the major differences end. The program here is a typical Brendle musical agenda, viz., modern jazz works (mostly penned by a bassist or guitarist), a couple Brendle originals, and a ringer of sorts, this time Muddy Waters' "Trouble No More." The modern material includes representatives from different stages in the development of that jazz category. Without a piano present, Brendle takes on a greater responsibility for carrying the session, both for providing the rhythmic foundation and as a soloist. Both these roles are amply demonstrated on "Not Forgetting," a Brendle original, where the bass works in and around the musings of the two saxophonists, John Alexander and Doug Henry. The group moves closer to off-center jazz on, of all things, "Trouble No More." While still presented within a swinging blues context, there is some sax stridency added to the mix, making for an innovative arrangement of this piece from the Delta and urban blues master. Another master (this time of modern jazz), Charles Mingus, is represented with an 11-minute working over of his in-your-eye shot at the segregationist shenanigans of Arkansas governor Orville Faubus. The set ends with a rumbling and somewhat psychedelic reenactment of Jimi Hendrix's "Manic Depression," with Brendle getting sounds from the bass that perhaps the instrument wasn't supposed to be capable of producing. Al Sergel's drums are given a prominent part on this track. With this album, Brendle continues his successful quest to present modern jazz in unique and interesting formats accessible to all jazz fans. Recommended.

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