Both sides of Rufus Reid, the jazz one and the classical one, come together
on this album; in fact, it’s like two albums for the price of one. The
six tracks on which his trio is joined by the internationally acclaimed Sirius
Quartet show off his facility for writing daring, memorable string arrangements
that draw equally from jazz and Western classical music. (Two of the
six are by Allee, also a sophisticated composer whose musical interests are
as broad as Rufus’s .) Forming a delightful counterweight to these hybrid,
chamber-jazz enterprises are five tunes that feature just piano, bass and
drums: three blues-based excursions, a tender ballad and a jazz samba.
The blurring of the lines between jazz and classical musicians - encouraged
by the conservatories where both genres are increasingly
part of the curriculum - is vividly demonstrated throughout the album,
and especially in the title track. Recruiting the Sirius Quartet for this
project proves to be an inspired choice - they are as celebrated for their
facility with improvisation as they are for their adventurous repertoire.
They play with precision and fire throughout, as demonstrated in the
title track, which includes dazzling improvised solos by violinist Gregor
Huebner and cellist Jeremy Harman. Eschewing false dichotomies,
Rufus insists on bringing both sides of his musical personality to bear.