Afro Bop Alliance Big Band Revelation



  1. CuBop
  2. No Rest for the Bones of the Dead
  3. Magharibi
  4. Family of Four
  5. Soufriere
  6. Dialed In
  7. Créencias

Supersizing is a winning approach for this group’s brand of high-energy Afro-Caribbean jazz. On its sixth outing, the ABA once again expands to a big band, and to be sure, this lineup is sonically colossal, it’s aggressive, and it drives. Drummer/leader JOE MCCARTHY is a grooving, precise player who lubricates his power flow with finesse and dramatic dynamics. His command informs the attitude and sound of the whole band, especially the crisp and nimble brass section. Revelation is one of the group’s most adventurous discs, largely due to three complex ten-and-a-half minute compositions by Roland Vazquez, who also conducts the numbers. On those excursions, the outfit expertly straddles a big band and orchestral mindset. McCarthy’s teamwork with conguero Samuel Torres is especially effective on the Vazquez number “Family of Four,” where they deftly guide the band between intricate, shifting grooves and textures. Another forward stride for this D.C.-based unit. (OA2 Records) — Jeff Potter, Modern Drummer