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Jason Raso: The Red Arrow

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Canadian bassist Jason Raso is a bit of a chameleon. On YouTube, one can view him playing a solo electric bass tribute to Jaco Pastorius, replete with distortion-laced frenzy on Hendrix’s “Third Stone From the Sun.” The Red Arrow, however, is an entirely different story. Alternating between acoustic and electric bass while overdubbing facile guitar lines, Raso delves into an early ’60s organ-group vibe on Grant Green-inspired numbers like “Nightcrawler” and “Corner Pocket,” both fueled by the blazing Hammond B3 work of Tony Monaco. Francesco Pinetti’s vibraphone replaces Monaco’s B3 on “Star Gazing” and the title track. Raso turns in an accomplished electric bass solo on the midtempo groover “Revolution Waltz,” then switches to upright on the 7/4 number “The Colbert Bump.” Alto saxophonist Richard Underhill and organist Joe Doria also contribute potent solos on the earthy second-line number “Mr. Green.”

Originally Published