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Andy Brown Quartet: Direct Call

Thoroughly worthy of its Johnny Hodges/Duke Ellington pedigree, in buoyantly swinging ways, “The Jeep Is Jumpin'” kicks off guitarist Andy Brown’s third recording for Delmark. There are several uptempo delights to come, enlivened by Brown’s fluid yet unfussy virtuosity. Swift propulsion and crisp breaks, courtesy of pianist Jeremy Kahn, bassist Joe Policastro and drummer Phil Gratteau, complete the picture.

In fact, throughout this session the supporting players provide a lot more than routine accompaniments, as a brisk reprise of Johnny Mandel’s charmer “El Cajon” illustrates. A rhythmically nimble performance laced with quick exchanges, it ultimately proves a splendid showcase for Kahn. If the quartet sounds like a working band, aware of its strengths and clearly practiced at the art of showcasing them, well, a lot of jazz fans in Chicago would be happy to confirm your suspicions.

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