NYSQ: Sleight of Hand

Consisting of Tim Armacost/ts-ss, David Berkman/p, Daiki Yasukagawa/b and Gene Jackson/dr, the NYSQ drinks deep from the hard bop waters on this winning album of jazz standards. Armacost has a deep and rich ‘Tranish tone, and uses is well on a surprisingly peppy and assertive take of “Soul Eyes” while going dreamy on “In a Sentimental Mood” and creating wide open spaces on “Detour Ahead.” Berkman is hip as he creates a nice bop line for Jackson’s high hat on his title track, while is nimble on the bouncy “Ask Me Now” and reflective for Armacost’s soprano on the floating “I Fall In Love Too Easily.” Yasukagawa creates a deep pulse for “ This I Dig of You” and leads the charge on a muscle flexing and nifty read of “Lover Man,” which is about triple the pace of any other version. These guys mix tradition with some moxie!

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