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January/February 2003

Adam Rogers Quartet
Art of the Invisible
Criss Cross Jazz

"Who?" is a question that a reviewer sometimes asks himself, one that certainly applies to Adam Rogers, even though he's been a sideman with the likes of Michael Brecker, Cassandra Wilson and Brother Jack McDuff. On his most recent album, Art of the Invisible (Criss Cross), Rogers leads his quartet-populated by pianist Edward Simon, bassist Scott Colley and drummer Clarence Penn-through a set of originals that gravitate toward the heady side of the spectrum in that they sometimes employ mixed meter and/or odd time signatures ("Absalom," "The Invisible") and explore free playing ("The Aleph"), all of which gives the guitarist myriad opportunities to exercise his talents at spinning out deft, relatively logical lines. His most distinctive stylistic departure arguably is "The Unvanquished," a moody ballad with obscure folklike elements and soundtrack potential.

Originally published in January/February 2003
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