Taylor Barnett: For Someone

Taylor Barnett Tentet playing a song at The Camel

On Monday night I attended the CD release show for my friend Taylor Barnett’s new album, For Someone.

The show was fantastic and included many of the songs from the album, several new pieces, and at least one cover (a Charles Mingus tune I can’t remember). This was the second time I’ve seen Taylor’s own ensemble play – the first was his composition recital – but I dare say The Camel on W. Broad St. was a far more comfortable setting for some Jazz than the concert hall at VCU.

I purchased For Someone near the end of the show, and I’ve been listening to it throughout the week. I’m already a fan of jazz ranging from Duke Ellington to Miles Davis to The Bad Plus (one of my favorites), so while I was supporting my friend on one hand, I was more than happy to get both hands on a recording of his original work. As objectively as I can put this, Taylor’s album is awesome.

A stand-out track for me is “What Do You Think Of Me?” which induces a mood of introspective melancholy and showcases some delicious guitar playing from the incredibly talented Trey Pollard. I’m also a huge fan of “Esther’s Dance” – a raucous and fun piece that seems fit for dancing indeed. The title track, “For Someone,” seems to build perpetually to a resolution that we only experience at the song’s close, pulling the listener through to its gentle conclusion. I’m finding the rest of the album to be worth repeated listens as well, with fantastic work on “Bartók Blues”, “Cloak and Dagger” and the rest.

Check it out samples of For Someone on DigStation where it’s available for purchase as a download (including the cover art from my friend Haley Hollenbach).

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