Jazz Inside Review (Full View, written by Bob Gish)
Ken Fowser/Behn Gillece
FULL VIEW–Posi-Tone Records. P.O. Box2848,
Venice, CA 90292. www.posi-tone.com. Bittersweet;
The Hutch; Act of Disguise; Soul Eyes; Two Pail; Just
in Time; Crisis Averted.
PERSONNEL: Ken Fowser, Tenor Saxophone;
Behn Gillece, vibraphone; David Hazeltine, piano;
Adam Cote, bass; Paul Francis, drums.
By Bob Gish
Tenor sax and vibraphone have always been kindred spirits and so are Ken Fowser and Behn Gillece who prove the point again here, forcefully and confidently, in a grouping of seven tunes, six of them original compositions by the featured duo of musical pals.
“Bittersweet" leads the play list, a tune by Sam Jones with all the tart and sweet contrasts any one could want in a tune–and in solos, contrasting with lots of unison playing of the head. Adam Cote plays his part too with interpretive soloing.
“Soul Eyes," by Mal Waldron is a longer cut at seven minutes but comes in about average in running time with Fowser’s “Two Pair" taking the marathon honors at over eight minutes. But “Soul Eyes," is a gem of a tune, showcasing all the dreamy, romantic capabilities of the tenor sax when played by someone of Fowser’s talent and ability. You get those special overtones all set in an obbligato context of soulful vibes. It’s this reviewer’s favorite among favorites.
“Just in Time" is a third tune not composed by the principals. This familiar Betty Camden tune takes on an up-tempo, let’s burn, dressing here, led by the speedy mallets of Gillece who hits everything right on in clear-eyed, heart-felt precision.
Gillece has three of his original tunes here: “Crisis Averted," “The Hutch," and “Act of Disguise" Fowser, as mentioned, shows his composition abilities with “Two Pair" (an obvious commentary not just on poker but on duo playing), and, like Gillece, Fowser’s creative juices are in full flow.
You can’t beat the instrumentation, arrangements, and musical abilities demonstrated here. So, kudos to two kindred spirits of Misters Ken and Behn who are deep in the “zone" and thankfully share that state of grace with us.