Exposé Online banner

Jason Smith — Tipping Point
(Moonjune MJR011, 2007, CD)

by Jeff Melton, Published 2008-10-01

Tipping Point Cover artA tipping point is sometimes defined as the borderline where you’re just under the influence of alcohol or some other (usually illegal) substance. For drummer Jason Smith it serves as a dividing marker between song and improvisation. Having seasoned pros like drummer Gary Husband (here on keys) and bassist Dave Carpenter (who have both supported Jack Bruce, Allan Holdsworth, and John McLaughlin) shows the high caliber of interplay on the seven cuts. Husband’s phrasing infers elements of McCoy Tyner and the more recent melodic style of Keith Jarrett with blinding speed and intricacy. The opening cut, “Carole’s Garden,” displays little reserve and lots of balls out energy; even Carpenter himself gets upright elbow room mid-way which suits him just fine. Smith is a chameleon of a musician for drummers. His instinctive rhythmic vocabulary translates to fit this piano trio to a tee as heard primarily on “Heyoke” and “Three Lies.” The former piece pulls an intuitive page from the recent Jarrett trio standards with Peacock and DeJohnette, while the latter tour de force track shows a wider range of melodic development: funky and purposeful. The band excels on the romantic platform as well with “The Way You Look Tonight,” an emotional late-night ballad with sentimental voicing and poignant mood massaging that works. In summary, this is a hot little trio that knows the nuances of the trio format and how to exploit them appropriately.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 36, 2007 releases

Related artist(s): Jason Smith

Latest news

2018-07-09
Soft Machine Set to Release New Music – It's been 50 years since The Soft Machine changed the face of music with their first album. Their blend of psychedelic rock and jazz was unique, and while the band went through many changes before disbanding in 1981 — by which time there were no original members remaining — they remained an innovative force with a style all their own. » Read more

2018-07-01
7d Surfaces Happy Rhodes Back Catalog – We've covered singer Happy Rhodes before, both for her solo work and recently with The Security Project, but her 11 albums have been hard to track down. Until now. 7d features high-quality downloads of all her releases, and several of them are also available on CD. » Read more

2018-06-25
Fred Chalenor RIP – We have news of another sad passing in the world of creative music. Bassist Fred Chalenor, whose creativity featured on albums by Tone Dogs, Caveman Shoestore, and many more, died on June 23, 2018 after a long battle with Alzheimer's. Tributes have poured in from the many musicians and fans whose lives he touched. » Read more

2018-06-13
Jon Hiseman RIP – One of the great drummers of the rock era has died. Jon Hiseman was a veteran of such ground-breaking groups as Colosseum (I and II), Tempest, John Mayal's Bleusbreakers, and was a founding member of the innovative large band United Jazz + Rock Ensemble. » Read more

2018-06-05
Koenjihyakkei Seeks Funding for New Album – It's been quite a few years since the last new studio album by the amazing Koenjihyakkei. Now they are preparing Dhormimviskha for worldwide release, and they're asking fans to pre-order via a Kickstarter campaign to help it happen. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

David Thomas & Foreigners - Bay City – Starting with his tenure in the seminal art-punk outfit Pere Ubu, David Thomas has shown himself to be a lyricist of great talent and singer of acquired taste. For this outing he teams up with a trio...  (2001) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues