Music Reviews

The Brad Upton Quartet


Black Orchid

Not redefining the world of fusion here, but The Brad Upton Quartet deliver a fine set of mostly light fusion and late-night bop, on a set comprised of Upton’s all-original material, delicately arranged by Eric Gunnison. Performed with smooth elegance by Upton on trumpet and flugelhorn, Gunnison on keys, Mike Marlier on drums and “Bijoux” Barbosa on bass, Dragon moves from the vivacious “Blues For S.M.R.” and the title track’s light blues bop, to the hushed “Mia” – featuring Upton and Gunnison only – and the closing, soothing “Talk To Me.” It’s a rather impressive set, taking in all shades and moods, while remaining somewhat anonymous in the midst of it all. Paradoxically, “For Herbie” – a lovely piece celebrating Herbie Hancock’s temper and tone – allow the musicians to display their own voices most convincingly.

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