Born in 2006 in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and the resulting migration of some New Orleans musicians to Chicago, Lucky 7s is a collaboration between mainstays of the Chicago creative scene (including trombonist Jeb Bishop, cornetist Josh Berman, and vibraphonist Jason Adasiewicz, all of whom are active in the scene around Ken Vandermark and Rob Mazurek) and trombonist Jeff Albert, together with his New Orleans rhythm section of bassist Matthew Golombisky and drummer Quin Kirchner.
The music starts off in somewhat familiar territory: sinuous melodies dressed up in virtuosic arrangements, with particular emphasis on expressionistic brass outbursts, while a dreamlike vibraphone, supported by a fluid, constantly swinging rhythm section, opens new harmonic perspectives. But the record -- whose dramatic progression is masterfully conceived -- quickly frees itself from a certain distanced postmodernism that has become common today, in favor of honest, unpretentious jazz playing.
Recapitulating, in a very personal way, not just the entire history of modern jazz (from free jazz to the "loft generation") but also the various readings of that history that musicians like Tim Berne and Ken Vandermark have contributed over the last twenty years, Lucky 7s create kaleidoscopic, brilliant music that is both sophisticated in its constant formal transformations and immediately accessible, due to its emotional commitment and the exemplary technical ability of each of the players. Brimming with intelligence, life, and emotion throughout, this recording is a deep breath of fresh air.
Pluto Junkyard is now available. Please go to the CD page for audio samples and purchasing info.
(July 30, 2008) Finally, there is news on the new CD. Pluto Junkyard will be released in 2009 on the Clean Feed label. We are very excited to be associated with Clean Feed, who have released a lot of very good music from both very well known and should be well known artists.
We just finished a great week of music making. We have some great new material, had some fun gigs, and a productive couple of days in the studio. There are free mp3s of a few of the new pieces on the Music page. Watch this space for news about a new CD in the next few months, hopefully. (posted July 24, 2007)
"...this intensely rhythmic and instrumental restlessness that pervades the entire session..."
"...beautiful, yet raucous energy..."
"It's a simply excellent album..."
- Jay Collins in Signal To Noise Spring 2007
Farragut is #10 on the 2006 WNUR Top 50 Records as selected by their DJs. It's in good company as well, because the #9 and #11 albums both feature members of the Lucky 7s.
Farragut gets a nice 3 and a half star review in the March 2007 issue of DownBeat.
"The album benefits from the contrasting personalities of its two main writers. Bishop's pieces...[are] long and multi-segmented; one moment their attractive melodies coast on vigorously swinging rhythms, the next they tumble in a free improv freefall. Albert's tunes ..."Swirling" and "504 No More...?" are tinged with tragedy, but "Bucktown Special" shakes off melancholy with a funky groove and joyous horn solos that unfurl over Jason Adasiewicz's vibes like flags behind a parade float."
- Bill Meyer in Downbeat March 2007
From the February 2007 issue of Cadence Magazine:
"The ensemble plays a raucous, yet controlled form of Jazz that has some of the joy of old New Orleans style yet is thoroughly Post-Bop in its inflections."
"The opening piece, "Stitch," is a microcosm of all that is strong in this band. Swinging ensemble, an interesting head, a dynamic rhythm section that builds intensity in response to the heat of some great solos."
"This is modern ensemble Jazz of the highest caliber. Grab this one!"
"The creative music scenes of Chicago and New Orleans join forces in the Lucky 7s septet, presented here live and raw. Neatly balancing abstraction with fat, chewy grooves, the band gleefully stomps through compositions by co-leaders Jeb Bishop and Jeff Albert, pulling back occasionally for stark atmospherics or somber ensemble sections. Jason Adasiewicz's cool vibraphone work adds an intriguing extra dimension to the second-line rhythms and ballsy horns in this dynamic north-south summit."
-Forrest Dylan Bryant
12 Jan 07 - Just added new mp3s from the 6 Sept 06 performance at Elastic in Chicago. Go to the Music page to check them out.
From Lloyd Sachs of the Chicago Sun Times (Oct. 15, 2006):
3 and a half stars
"... Lucky 7s is actually several bands in one: It's a harmonically rich free jazz unit inspired by the Sun Ra Arkestra, a bop-oriented ensemble with warm "head" arrangements and a texture-minded group that thrives on the quiet cool of Jason Adasiewicz's vibes. You can hear second-line New Orleans beats in the mix, as well, ...
Somehow, the seams never show as the septet bobs and weaves through its long, episodic pieces ... "Farragut" has a gentle spirit to go with its hard-nose vamping. "
October 7, 2006 The title track from Farragut is featured as the free Download of the Day at AllAboutJazz.com. It will be archived, so if you don't get it today, don't worry.
From the website of WNUR FM in Evanston, IL.
WEEKLY TOP 10
These are the top 10 releases ranked by actual total airplay by our 20+ jazz DJ's for the week ending on September 8, 2006.
(* denotes reissue)
1. Lucky 7's - Farragut - Lakefront Digital
2. Carnival Skin - Carnival Skin - Nemu
3. Dave Holland - Critical Mass - Dare2 Records
4. Trio Beyond - Saudades - ECM
5. Alan Luchusza/Christopher Adler - Mineralia - pfMentum
6. Race!!! - Travels - Prescott
7. Lee Konitz/Ohad Talmor - Inventions - Omnitone
8. CINC - CINC - Okkadisc
9. Michel Blanc - Le Passage Eclair - D'autres Cordes
10. Liberty Ellman - Ophiuchus Butterfly - Pi
Check out this piece on the Lucky 7s by Matthew Lurie in the August 31, 2006 issue of Time Out Chicago.
©2006-8 Lucky 7s
email: firstname.lastname@example.org phone: Jeff Albert (985) 966-6093