Bar code: 8427328424639
"Gimmicky, right? Cute lower-case device for Juan Pablo, backwards lettering on cover art, palindromic structure? Actually, no. This is Balcazar's fifth CD for FSNT, if one includes two excellent discs on which he and Pintxo went out as Ballcock and The Heckler. Jordi Pujol has a gift for finding great bassist-led groups and this is one of his genuine coups, an irresistibly swinging modern jazz record where all but the central theme enjoy two distinct outings, one with trio and one with quartet.
There's evidence of Balcazar's astonishing sound on double bass right from the beginning. His sound is cavernous, ripe and grand, as if he's playing cable-thick strings over an outsize woody cavity. Mezouda has a punchy, solid touch, while Falanga, relieved of lower-end duties, plays bright, musical figures, somewhat in the Joey Baron style. The quartet reprise of Acurruca is dazzling and suddenly makes sense of the set's mirror structure. Fine as these themes are first time round, they're taken to a new level when Pintxo's reedy, warmly penetrating voice comes in. I just played this back-to-back with the earlier stuff: Viaje-Voyage, Invocation and the Ballcock/Heckler things. He keeps on growing."
-Brian Morton (Jazz Journal, April 2015)
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