Their version of "In The Wee Small Hours Of The Morning" might be best considered as a re-construction of the song. The introduction is a slow 4-part a cappella rumination on the lyrics, leaving out the opening line of the song, and eschewing both the original harmony and melody. The rhythm section enters at lightning speed with the Voices singing a boppish variation over the top. One might be afraid of a reckless up-tempo reading of a very tender lyric, but instead Meador charges in with a burning tenor sax solo, backed up with wordless figures from the Voices. Eventually, the intensity starts to dissipate, even though the racehorse tempo is still implied. Then through a clever manipulation of syncopated figures, the tempo shifts down to medium as the Voices sing the verse to the song. And what marvelous group phrasing they use, with supremely executed phrases that sound like the sections of a top-line big band. At the end of the verse, the tempo shifts down again, and here - nearly halfway through the arrangement - we finally get to hear the original song! Singing the beautiful melody, Kim Nazarian deftly alternates between solo interpretation and leading the other Voices. After the melody chorus, Meader comes back on tenor sax for a sensuous duet with Nazarian over a repeated vamp. Then the band drops out as the opening a cappella section returns. The piano supports the Voices in the coda, and then there is a short and surprising return to the fast tempo before the track ends.
July 02, 2009 · 0 commentsTags: in the wee small hours of the morning
Previous Page | Next Page