John Abercrombie: Class Trip
John Abercrombie (guitar)
Class Trip (ECM 1846 B0002289-02)
John Abercrombie (guitar),
Mark Feldman (violin), Marc Johnson (bass), Joey Baron (drums).
Composed by John Abercrombie.
Recorded: New York, February 2003
Rating: 90/100 (learn more)
"Class Trip" is a mood-piece ballad. Violinist Mark Feldman spends a lot of time plucking a round-robin arpeggio pattern with bassist Marc Johnson and occasionally guitarist John Abercrombie. This motif alone makes the cut worthwhile. It is a toned-down Mahavishnu-like pattern, but just as ingratiating. An easy-to-aggressive European swing dominates the rest of the piece. Abercrombie has some of finest jazz chops ever. In the more energetic sections, the tune takes on a Hot Club of France touch. There is great interplay among the participants, especially Abercrombie and Feldman. I would describe "Class Trip" as a middling swing piece, in tempo only, if it were not for the frequent recurrence of the opening pattern. It serves both to set a mood and as a transitional device. When the tune is over, you will remember that series of notes. As one would expect from such a talented aggregation, this is wonderful music containing both direct statements and nuance.
Reviewer: Walter Kolosky