John O’Gallagher’s Axiom is fronted by another two-sax combination: the leader on alto and soprano and Tony Malaby on tenor. Line of Sight (Fresh Sounds New Talent) is a brainy set, spotlighting O’Gallagher’s labor-intensive compositions. O’Gallagher’s bag is non-tonal melody both improvised and composed. On the thoughtful, restrained “Effluence,” O’Gallagher plays alto with an astringent, vibrato-less tone and a quiet lyricism interspersed with flurries of concentrated activity. On up-tempo material like “Revolving Doors,” his lines are clean, fast and precise. Although there’s little blatant emotionalism to his work he can generate excitement.
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