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Happy Apple

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Happy Apple


Happy Apple are part of a heartening development that's taken hold in jazz over recent years. This trio of young, open-minded musicians grew up on all kinds of music. Their audience draws more from the rock-bred twentysomething crowd than it does from older club-goers. Make no mistake -- even though they've recorded on a rock label (No Alternative), this isn't rock or even "fake jazz." From Ornette Coleman to Medeski, Martin & Wood, you can find points of comparison, but the group has their own sound. Plus they know how to improvise. Drummer David King, in particular, is a monster as far as his ability to juggle backbeats, odd meters, tumbling free-flourishes, and hard-swinging Bop rhythms in the space of a single piece. Saxophonist Michael Lewis attacks with an explosive style that gives the nod to Coltrane and Ornette without mimicking them, while Eric Fratzke tactfully holds things together on the often abused electric bass. Add to their stellar interplay a sharp (though not excessive) sense of humor and plenty of well-written tunes, and you have a band worth keeping tabs on.
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