Sun Rooms offers a different listening experience than Jason Adasiewicz’s other projects, like his quintet Rolldown, which sonically evokes Eric Dolphy’s Out to Lunch! As on its 2010 debut, the group has no horn-playing cohorts along for the ride here. The leader’s vibraphone stands alone on the frontline with the rhythm section of bassist Nate McBride and drummer Mike Reed supporting him in the background. The vibes’ melodic character might roll past quickly, due to the way Adasiewicz plays, using the sustain pedal most of the time and making melodies spill into one another. A casual listen to Spacer could give the impression that all the tracks have a similar approach and that one blends into the next. But this music shouldn’t be listened to casually.
Adasiewicz exploits the dreamy quality of his instrument early on in “Hi Touch.” The bass and drums vamp behind him while he plays a somewhat repetitive groove and uses sustain to help it resonate. In “Run Fly,” with its walking bass and steady 4/4, the vibes solo begins with short phrases that ring out. Then Adasiewicz steps on and off the sustain as his ideas get more complex and rapid. By the end of the album the trio plays freely on “Waiting in the Attic,” creating a steady movement of bubbling bass under some rolling drones from the vibes. It never gets frenzied—Reed plays with brushes the whole time—but builds in energy. Spacer is a significant addition to Adasiewicz’s consistently engrossing catalogue.