I could have told them that was a good pairing three years ago

September 14th, 2006 → 11:49 am @ // No Comments

This week, Jason Moran‘s Bandwagon and the Bad Plus are playing a double-bill at Manhattan’s Blue Note. (There’s a review of the show in today’s Times.) The Blue Note is one of my least favorite jazz clubs — the acoustics suck, the sight lines are crappy, the food is sub-standard, and the crowds drawn by the legendary name are frequently both annoying and unknowledgable — but this is a show worth going to. The Bad Plus are one of my favorite groups of the decade, and they’re as good an introduction to the current jazz scene as anything out there; for such an adventuresome (and rhythmically complex) group, they’re also an easy entry in for those intimated by the whole genre. (“Iron Man,” “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” “Heart of Glass,” “We Are the Champions,” and “Chariots of Fire” all make regular appearances on their set lists. No joke.) I’m surprised this isn’t a double bill that’s played together more often; as I wrote back in 2003, they’re among the best of this generation of jazz musicians. (I’ve become newly obsessed with another pianist I wrote about: Brad Mehldau. Check out “Day Is Done” and “Live In Tokyo.”)

Post Categories: Jazz

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