Fred Hoadley: SONANDO Jazz Now Sept 1994
As evidence of the Seattle music scene's ungrungy side, we have the affably grooving Latin Jazz of Sonando. Producer-pianist Fred Hoadley's project is tight as a timbale, with first-rate soloists, simmering multiple percussion, and a stiletto-sharp ensemble playing consistently engaging compositions and arrangements.
Sonando's agenda is obvious from the CD's opener, a stylized version of John Coltrane's "Blue Train." Arranger-trumpeter Jay Thomas (where have I heard of this guy?) reconfigures the tune from a medium-tempo swinger to a quietly agitator 6/8 Latin steamer, featuring the languid piano of Hoadley and a nice, Trane-inspired solo from tenorist Jim Coile. One of the album's best cuts is "Taboo," a high-energy cooker that set's off the band's freakishly solid percussion section. Thomas contributes many of the record's finest solos, on trumpet and, of all things, soprano sax. How's that for an odd double? Sonando's standard of musicianship is quite high. A fun listen. (Chris Kelsey)