Exposé Online banner

Michael Gregory Jackson Clarity Quartet — Whenufindituwillknow
(Bandcamp no#, 2019, CD / DL)

by Jon Davis, Published 2019-09-14

Whenufindituwillknow Cover art

I first encountered guitarist Michael Gregory Jackson a couple years ago on Wadada Leo Smith’s Najwa album, though in that session he was working alongside three other guitarists, so I’d have to say his playing didn’t stand out — certainly I expect Smith wouldn’t hire someone who wasn’t up to snuff. With the awkwardly titled WHENUFINDITUWILLKNOW, I finally got a chance to see what Jackson is capable of when he’s in the driver’s seat. His career features quite a wide variety of work, from years with various jazz leaders on the free side to pop, R&B, and soul, and some of that breadth is displayed on this album. Jackson is a very distinctive guitarist who favors clean tones, though not without full body, and likes unusual chord voicings that include some dissonant intervals. He does occasionally add an edge of distortion to his tone, and his way of bending notes (I’m guessing both string bending and whammy bar are involved) is at times a little reminiscent of Mark Wingfield, though Jackson also has some of the frenetic energy of Raoul Björkenheim. This quartet includes Niels Præstholm on bass, Simon Spang-Hanssen on alto and soprano saxophones, and Matias Wolf Andreason on drums, all of whom are Danish. Spang-Hanssen has a discography going back to the 70s, notably including work with Nguyên Lê, but I’m otherwise unfamiliar with his playing. Given the evidence at hand, he’s a flexible and talented player, able to blend gritty blues licks with avant-tinged elements. Andreason is great on the drums, with standout moments on most every track, and incorporates ideas from outside jazz into his rhythms. Præstholm’s upright works nicely to keep the music grounded. Fans of jazz guitar who don’t have Michael Gregory Jackson on their radar would do well to check out this album — he’s a player with a voice of his own that seamlessly blends accessibility and experimentation.


Filed under: New releases, 2019 releases

Related artist(s): Michael Gregory Jackson

More info
http://bit.ly/2MJ0g7i

Latest news

2020-05-15
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more

2020-05-14
Jorge Santana RIP – Jorge Santana, noted guitarist, leader of the band Malo and brother to Carlos Santan, died on May 14 at the age of 68. Jorge and Carlos worked together on a number of occasions, though Jorge's career was centered around Malo, solo work, and with Fania All-Stars. » Read more

2020-05-06
Florian Schneider RIP – Florian Schneider, one of the founders of the pioneering electronic group Kraftwerk, has died at the age of 73. Co-founder Ralf Hütter announced that his bandmate had passed away from cancer after a brief illness. » Read more

2020-04-23
Shindig Festival Goes Lock-Down – Here's what they're saying: It's A Happening Thing! The Shindig! Magazine Lockdown Festival. In our days of no large gatherings of people, maybe it's still possible to have a music festival. Shindig! Magazine is giving it a go with a multi-artist streaming extravaganza on Saturday April 25. » Read more

2020-03-24
Bill Rieflin RIP – The sad news reaches us today of Bill Rieflin's death. Rieflin was best known as a drummer in bands ranging from post-punk to industrial to indie-rock to progressive rock, including work with The Blackouts, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Swans, Land, and King Crimson. Rieflin had been battling cancer for several years, and succumbed to it on March 24. He was 59. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Five Fifteen - Six Dimensions of the Electric Camembert – For their fourth album (the first I’ve heard), Finland’s Five Fifteen continue their tradition of long psychedelic titles. Gong fans don’t be fooled, the mention of the French cheese...  (1999) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues