Drawing on influences that range from John Scofield and Bill Frisell to Pat Metheny and Mike Stern, Pete McCann has a creative, diverse jazz-rock effort in Parable. If you define fusion as "jazz mixed with rock and/or funk," McCann's guitar playing could certainly be considered fusion. But Parable draws on jazz's electric avant-garde (most notably, Ornette Coleman's "Prime Time") as well as its fusion school. McCann and sidemen Peter Epstein (soprano & alto sax), Bruce Huron (tenor sax), Tim Lefebvre (acoustic & electric bass), and Matt Wilson (drums, percussion) play mostly inside but aren't afraid to venture outside when it's appropriate. That inside/outside juxtaposition is one of the things that makes Parable unpredictable -- another is the diversity of the writing. This CD ranges from the cerebral ("Victim Sweepstakes," "Grimlock") to the quietly reflective ("Patricia," "Parable") and the remorseful ("Gone"). Not to be confused with Oliver Nelson's early-'60s classic, "Hoedown" successfully fuses Coleman-ish angularity with hints of country and folk. Parable is a release that both fusion and avant-garde enthusiasts can appreciate.
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AllMusic Review by Alex Henderson