David Bixler

Lost in Queens

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An attractive, post bop alto saxophonist with a clear lineage back to Bird, David Bixler's strengths lie in his somewhat acerbic tone and his songwriting skills. His six originals sound as though you've heard them before, but of course, you haven't. The slightly winding melodies leave a residue of pleasing vibrations. Bixler's interpretation of Hank Williams' "I'm So Lonely I Could Cry" doesn't quite hack it, but his versions of Cole Porter's "You Do Something to Me" and Wayne Shorter's "E.S.P." hit the mark. John Hart's guitar and Scott Wendholt's trumpet (on several cuts) are pleasant additions, particularly for their skills as soloists. The guitar doubles as horn and piano sub, with positive results, while the bass and drums are relegated to supportive roles. This is the sort of set that appeals most on a hot and humid day, when some relaxed, well-played mainstream jazz may be the panacea. Bixler is not the new Bird, but he knows how to pace a set and keep the atmosphere moving in the right direction.

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