After releasing the "dynamic" and "passionate" (Jazz Times
in 2006, the multiple Grammy-nominated Branford Marsalis
Quartet toured worldwide for two years before returning to the recording studio. The result, a nine track masterpiece, is one of the band's strongest and most broadly appealing albums to date. Metamorphosen
is scheduled to be released on the saxophonist's Marsalis Music label March 17, 2009.
The album title, which is German for "metamorphoses," was chosen to emphasize the growth and development of the quartet and each individual member. "We've all been practicing," Marsalis comments, "and you can hear it in the development of the music and in our sound." Metamorphosen
shows the band's collective bond of deep friendship, respect and musicianship. With more than ten years together under their belt, the saxophonist's acclaimed ensemble (featuring pianist Joey Calderazzo, bassist Eric Revis and drummer Jeff "Tain" Watts) pushes the envelope even farther with intense focus, subtlety and excitement.
Recorded and produced by Branford at the Hayti Center in his hometown Durham, NC, Metamorphosen
features original compositions by each member of the quartet as well as its unique take on Thelonious Monk
's "Rhythm-a-ning". Among the standout tracks are "Samo ©," Watts' dedication to the late visual artist Jean-Michel Basquiat; the unaccompanied bass feature "And Then, He Was Gone," in which Revis contemplates his son growing up; and Calderazzo's moving ballads "The Blossom of Parting" and "The Last Goodbye." Marsalis' contribution, "Jabberwocky," is a challenging 19-bar form that features his first recording on alto saxophone in over two decades.
is perhaps the Branford Marsalis Quartet's most accessible album for music lovers of all genres. "We try to do everything," Marsalis explains. "We run the gamut, and are prepared to play anything at any time. These are incredible musicians who are really good at playing in a variety of styles." Fans will see the "metamorphoses" first hand as the Branford Marsalis Quartet performs in selected cities across the U.S. in support of the new album, beginning in March 19th at the Jazz Alley in Seattle.
-Check out Branford's entire discography here
March 19-22 Seattle, WA Jazz Alley
March 24-28 Los Angeles, CA Catalina's
March 29 San Francisco, CA Palace of Fine Arts
March 30 Santa Cruz, CA Kuumbwa
March 31 San Diego, CA Anthology
April 1 San Diego, CA Anthology
April 4 Miami, FL Gusman Center for the Arts
April 5 Philadelphia, PA Annenberg Cntr for Perf. Arts
April 16 Byron Center, MI Van Singel Fine Arts Center
April 17 Chicago, IL Orchestra Hall
April 18 Birmingham, MI First Methodist Church
May 3 Ridgefield, CT Ridgefield Playhouse
May 5-10 New York, NY Jazz Standard*
(* 2 shows each night, 3rd show Fri & Sat)