Master Plan is also true of Dave Weckl's third album as a leader of Hard-Wired -- it isn't the fusion masterpiece Weckl is capable of delivering, but it certainly isn't bad either. This time, the drummer's guests include keyboardist Jay Oliver and bassist Anthony Jackson as well as bassist John Patitucci, who like Weckl, was no longer a member of Chick Corea's Akoustic and Elektric Bands and was making his own albums a priority. The album's main emphasis is fusion that is fairly accessible, yet substantial and improvisatory. Tunes like the Asian-influenced title song and the groove-oriented "Crazy Horse" weren't recorded with hard bop's hard-liners in mind, but at the same time, they don't pander to NAC radio. As enjoyable as this album is, it isn't essential. One sensed that Weckl's best work as a leader was yet to come.
read other reviews (and mine!) just remember the profound musing ...
opinions are like [anatomical descriptor here]: everyone's got one. Now
for my second disclaimer: I am a drummer. That said, I enjoy this CD as
much for the stellar non-percussion composition and performances as much
as I do for the stellar percussion composition and performances.
CD sizzles. It has some songs on it that could be said to have been
written with "pop"y hooks in them, yes. It also has a masterful latin
piece ("Dis' Place This") with some wild rhythms in it (love that piano
part!), whimsical tunes ("Afrique" and "Just an Illusion"), moody songs
("In Flight" and "Where's Tom?"), jazzy urban grooves ("Crazy Horse"
(amazing keyboard work) and "In the Pocket"), and a soulful, somber
finish ("Tribute") with a wonderfully rich piano part (it takes getting
through about a minute of muted key tones played to a ride cymbal to get
to it) that the sax picks up and follows along with. The entire horn
section is well-written and well-played throughout the album.
definitely gets his time in the spotlight, and NO ONE can do it quite
like him. Some of the songs did take a few listens to get into, I admit,
but this is now one of my favorite CDs of all time. If you think the
samples on Amazon are interesting AT ALL, then BUY IT. I don't think
you'll feel you wasted any money after only a few plays.
not only my favorite Weckl CD, but one of my favorite CDs of all time.
When I heard Weckl with Chick's Electric Band I was blown away at his
sound. When I heard his compositions on "Master Plan" with Jay Oliver, I
was Floored. I had no idea this guy was as great a composer as he was a
drummer! Not only are these guys masters of their instruments, they are
also amazing composers. The rhythms, the melodies, the solos, are all
beyond incredible. Jay Oliver is simply the best soloist I have ever
heard. His 'mimic guitar' solo in "Crazy Horse" is the coolest 'guitar
solos' I have ever heard. Whether you play drums, bass, guitar, keys,
sax, horns or just love hearing the finest compositions played by the
finest musicians, GET THIS CD! You will be BLOWN AWAY!
is definitely an improvement over Dave's previous solo album "Heads
Up," especially in the aspect of songwriting. It might still be somewhat
of a drummer's album, but after all it IS a drummer's album! Dave plays
some great grooves with some crazy beat displacement/syncopation on the
more latin-fusion flavored tracks, as well as some straighter pocket
playing. Just an interesting side note- the "guitar" solo on track 5
that is mentioned in other reviews is actually Jay Oliver using a unique
sound on the keyboard, and using the pitch bend! This is a must have
for drummers, but also a good album for anyone who appreciates jazz
fusion oriented, instrumental music.
1 Hard-Wired 4:02
2 Afrique 5:53
3 Dis' Place This 6:38
4 In Flight 6:11
5 Crazy Horse 5:41
6 Just An Illusion 5:09
7 Where's Tom? 5:09
8 In The Pocket 5:29
9 Tribute 5:09
Drum, Drum Programming – Dave Weckl
Bass – Anthony Jackson (tracks: 1, 2, 3,), James Genus (tracks: 5, 6, 7), John Patitucci (tracks: 4, 9)
Bass [Programming] – Jay Oliver (tracks: 8)
Soprano Saxophone, Alto Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone, Electronic Wind Instrument – Steve Tavaglione
Synthesizer, Piano, Organ – Jay Oliver
Trumpet – Scott Alspach