Allison Au Quartet: Forest Grove

Alto saxist Allison Au brings her compositions in for interpretation and deliver along with Todd Pentney/key, Jon Maharaj/b and Fabio Ragnelli/dr. Her tone is bright, with a slight left of center approach to soloing and melody. She’s got a dreamy wide vibrato, which she lets undulate on the melancholy “Bolero” along with Felicity Williams’ wordless vocals. The two team up again for the fluffy and mysterious “The Clearing” while Au cries on her own with Pentney’s spacious piano on “Tumble.” Ragnelli’s crisp drumming drives the bluesy “Tides” and creates an assertive undercurrent along with some fuzzy alto sax affects by the leader on the turbulent “Deluge.”

The whole band takes turns on the multi-themed and mood changing “They Say We Are Not Here” as Pentney’s B3 oozes along with Au’s alto with delight. Sophisticated and the harmonies with reed and voice make for a winning combo.

Canada Council For The Arts

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