John Scofield: Groove Elation
John Scofield (electric and acoustic guitars)
Groove Elation (Blue Note CDP 7243 8 32801 2 4)
Larry Goldings (organ, piano), Dennis Irwin (bass), Don Alias (percussion).
Composed by: John Scofield.
Recorded: New York, 1995
Rating: 93/100 (learn more)
It's a straight blues disguised as a Mardi Gras romp. Muhammad's flawless Big Easy beat, Irwin's old- school bass and Goldings's Jimmy McGriff-styled Hammond B-3 set the stage. With the rhythm section playing at perhaps a lower volume than customary for such festive music, the spotlight shines even more squarely on the leader, but man, does he deliver. Scofield's lines are precise, passionate and modulated to perfection. He starts off softly and builds to controlled urgency, inserting righteous blues licks while always remaining aware of Muhammad's backbeat. Entirely devoid of hackneyed phrases, too. As solos goes, the one he puts down here is one of John Scofield's finest moments in the studio.
Reviewer: S. Victor Aaron