JazzTimes - 4/03, p.110
"...The band immediately asserts itself as a vehicle for Fedchock's concerted vision as well as a springboard for tons of solos between the band statements..."
Personnel includes: John Fedchock (arranger, trombone); Rick Margitza (tenor saxophone); Mark Vinci, Rich Perry (saxophone, flute); Charles Pillow (saxophone, clarinet); Tony Kadleck, Craig Johnson (trumpet, flugelhorn); John Fedchock (trombone); Allen Farnham (piano); Lynn Seaton (bass); Dave Ratajczak (drums).
Recorded at Avatar Studios, New York, New York on May 22 & 23, 2002. Includes liner notes by Bob Bernotas.
"Caribbean Fire Dance" was nominated for the 2004 Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Arrangement.
Personnel: John Fedchock (trombone); Mark Vinci (flute, alto flute, soprano saxophone, alto saxophone); Rich Perry (flute, tenor saxophone); Charles Pillow (clarinet, soprano saxophone, alto saxophone); Rick Margitza (tenor saxophone); Scott Robinson (baritone saxophone); Scott Wendholt, Barry Ries (trumpet, flugelhorn); Keith O'Quinn, Clark Gayton (trombone); George Flynn (bass trombone); Allen Farnham (piano); Dave Ratajczak (drums); Bobby Sanabria (percussion).
Audio Mixer: Paul Wickliffe.
Liner Note Author: Bob Bernotas.
Recording information: Avatar Studios, New York, NY (05/22/2002/05/23/2002).
Arranger: John Fedchock.
There is something refreshing about John Fedchock's approach to big-band hard bop. Unabashedly traditional, Fedchock's 17-piece ensemble (which features many top-drawer instrumentalists from New York's jazz scene) swings like they mean it. A fluid player capable of both speed and lyricism, Fedchock is located in the tradition of bop 'bone men like Curtis Fuller and J.J. Johnson. His charts are varied, complex, and colorful, and always engage the full possibilities of the large group without sacrificing solo spots.
Four of the album's 10 tracks are penned by Fedchock, and they hold up surprisingly well alongside better-known compositions from members of the jazz pantheon. Fedchock's playing stands out especially on Freddie Hubbard's gentle "Eclipse," while Joe Henderson's "Caribbean Fire Dance" allows tenor saxophonist Rick Margitza to unfurl his chops. Duke Ellington's "Come Sunday" gets a tender, almost orchestral treatment, and Thelonious Monk's "Epistrophy" is driven by a tense, powerful swing. That Fedchock and company give life to these classics, and shine equally on their own material, is testament to their musical prowess.