Jazz fusion is a musical style that has been going relatively strong for over half a century and in certain artistic circles the genre is held in high regard. With this being said, it doesn’t really have a major presence on a local level when it comes to the music scene around Rhode Island. A lot of jazz acts in Lil’ Rhody either have that classic big band vibe or they take cues from the eras of the ‘50s and early ‘60s while some rock bands have a noticeable fusion influence but their sound leans more towards funk and prog. One band that’s been bringing their own take on the art form to venues around these parts is Providence’s Falcon Brunch. Their debut “Four Dudes Trying To Rip” EP that came out on October 28 is a refreshing and captivating example of jazz fusion being done in a raw and genuine way.
Consisting of John McCarthy and Brian Fink alternating duties on guitar & bass, Ben Dulong on saxophone and Al Lombardi on drums, Falcon Brunch brings an impressive sound quality from beginning to end with the new record. This is courtesy of recording & mixing engineer Jake Pardee, who worked with the band over the course of single weekend at Maritime Music
Studios in Peabody, Massachusetts followed by Tim Phillips handling the mixing & mastering.
“‘Four Dudes Trying to Rip’ is the first finished product born from seven years of deeply nested inside jokes, ongoing dialogue between order and chaos, exploration of the lines between meaning and absurdity and occasional pointed discussions,” Fink says about the EP. “It presents a sampler menu of the unique musical influences, styles, and perspectives of Al, Ben, John and myself. The EP may be considered as an appetizer, with an entree to follow in the form of ‘The Big Rip’ expected to land in late 2023.”
What I really like about the record is how the music doesn’t depend on any glossy production tricks to get across. The guitar riffs have a good amount of distortion, the rhythms are abstract and the saxophone is the focal point when it comes to the overall vibe. “Ethereal Theory Theorist” rides a wicked cool groove while Fink’s guitar solo runs a little past the halfway mark and is absolutely stunning. The drumming courtesy of Lombardi on “Gigliopuff” is fantastic and the same can be said for Dulong’s skills on the sax. Closing out the second half of the four-song EP is “Daedalus” and “Turbo Chode” with the former being borderline psychedelic and the latter having a vintage cool jazz vibe.
If you like instrumental music that can get groovy at times while incorporating a saxophone, then Falcon Brunch’s new EP is ideal listening material. This can also be said for anyone who likes to switch up their music library every now and then. To give “Four Dudes Trying To Rip” a listen, give the record a stream and make a purchase at falconbrunch1.bandcamp.com. To keep tabs on shows, possible banter, inside jokes and whatever else, follow the band on Facebook at facebook.com/falconbrunch.
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