David Weiss: When Words Fail

Album review
David Weiss: When Words Fail

David Weiss

When Words Fail

Label: Motema
Media: CD
Genre: Jazz
Ratings:
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This trumpeter-composer-arranger and bandleader’s latest outing reflects the profound sense of personal loss he experienced in the past year. The bittersweet title track, which features some robust, probing tenor sax playing by Marcus Strickland, is for his longtime friend and colleague, bassist Dwayne Burno, who died just a few weeks after this recording was completed. “Passage Into Eternity” is for saxophonist Jimmy Greene, a charter member of The New Jazz Composers Octet who lost a daughter in the horrific Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting. “Loss” is for Motema founder Jana Herzen, who lost her father this past year. Yet in spite of the mournful theme there’s an underlying sense of hope in spirited tracks like the hard-driving, swinging Freddie Hubbard tribute, “The Intrepid Hub,” a showcase for alto sax burner Myron Walden, as well as the sextet’s take on John Taylor’s “White Magic” (a tune based on Herbie Hancock’s “Riot”) and the lush, uplifting “Wayward.” Weiss, an expressive but underappreciated soloist, contributes some lovely trumpet solos throughout. But it’s his masterful ensemble writing and rich horn voicings on pieces like “Loss,” “Lullaby for a Lonely Child,” and “Passage Into Eternity,” that remain with the listener. 

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Contributors:
  • primary artist, David Weiss

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