"Relatively Out There" Review
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Relatively Out There Review

Album

Relatively Out There

Artist

MCFC Jazz Quartet

Band Members

Philippe Crettien – tenor saxophone
Patrick Mottaz – guitar
John Funkhouser – bass
Mike Connors – drums

The French saxophonist Philippe Crettien, who immigrated to the United States, one of the founders of the Toulon Jazz festival has joined with three young musicians from the Boston area to form the MCFC (their Initials) Jazz Quartet. Today, in 2014, they continue together with bassist Sean Farias replacing John Funkhouser. After cultivating a big powerful sound, Philippe Crettien’s tenor playing has evolved from the influences of John Coltrane and Wayne Shorter to that of Warn Marsh a major influence now. Here are four musicians, each having rich musical paths, joining together to create music rooted in the great jazz tradition. Patrick Mottaz’s playing inherits the lyricism of Charlie Christian, Wes Montgomery including Blues and Rock influences. John Funkhouser has a rich harmonic language and great lyricism, which is tender and powerful at the same time. Mike Connors knows how to combine swing, sensibility and efficiency in a masterful way. We have here a quartet that speaks the same language and delivers a powerful and engaging jazz.

One of the great qualities of a jazz musician is to take a standard and to make it his own; a unique approach that gives renewed life to the tune. It is the case here with “Summertime” in a slow tempo, reharmonized with great sensibility and taste. “7 sur 5” in a contrasting way, we enter a very muscular approach to the tenor and band performance which navigates the post Coltrane area.  This is a quartet, which cultivates dialogue four ways with four equal voices with no one stealing the spotlight. This is expressive, delicate, tender jazz that is passionate and Lyrical. This is beautiful Jazz, real Jazz, the jazz of today.

by Serge Baudot
Jazz Hot Magazine