Dana Hall

Into the Light

origin 82547

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MUSIC REVIEW BY Jim Santella, Cadence

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Drummer Dana Hall mixes Jazz mainstream material with some heavily progressive textures on this recording debut as leader. As a member of Terell Stafford's quintet, he's familiar with the members of this ensemble; they share a fondness for group-speak, where unison passages fill the bill and individual soloing remains prominent. Hall, who studied aerospace engineering at Iowa State University, sees the role of drummer as a creative force in Jazz whose timekeeping duties should go unnoticed in favor of a partnership with the ensemble's front line. Thus, he drives his ensemble hard and refuses to settle for the background.

Tim Warfield and Terell Stafford fuse a good, solid unison when desired, but Hall's title track mixes their instrumental voices with dissonance to achieve a new and different sound. Electronic manipulation results in Science Fiction material that moves Into the Light beyond the frontiers of Earth's planetary space where distant stars and galaxies await recognition.

Most of the session forges statements that fall more in line with convention. "Jabali" features the drummer against a Freebop regime where horns and rhythm walk quickly apace of Hall's overt rambles. "The Path to Love" walks steadily to Bop lines while the drummer thunders in and out. "Conversion Song" features tenor saxophonist Warfield in a Straight-Ahead position where Hall restrains his interference somewhat. Throughout most of the session Dana Hall thunders forcefully behind his musical partners and comes through louder with a telltale percussive voice that declares him the leader of the band.






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