The Merciad

Reviewer thrown by jazz trio name

Michael Solazzo, Staff writer

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I love jazz music, even though it might not be for everyone.
I see jazz as one of the greatest art forms that the United States ever created.
This January, I even made the trip to New York City to see some authentic live jazz, and boy was it really great.
Through writing for the paper, I get the opportunity to write about all sorts of different events on campus, and when I heard that a jazz trio was coming, my interest was piqued and I wondered about the instrumentation.
I decided the best way to approach new music is with an open mind and no expectations, so I decided I would not do any prior research on the Warp Trio.
When I arrived, I noticed four instruments on stage, which I thought was a bit odd considering they were called the Warp Trio, however I kept an open mind.
When they actually came out on stage with four people, however, I was a bit bewildered.
I wondered, if they have four people, why did they not change their name to the Warp Quartet.
It seems pretty elementary to me that they would be named a quartet because a trio implies three people, even though there were four of them.
As the music started, it was a different lineup instrument wise then I would have expected.
They were composed of a violin, a cello, a piano and a Cajon (a percussion instrument you sit on)/drums.
While watching the percussionist sit up on stage banging on the cajon was interesting for a few songs, by the middle of their first set it was not fulfilling me.
It seemed as though the cajon was causing a lack of depth.
Additionally, the fact that one of their rhythm instruments was a cello and the solo instrument was a violin also caused a lack of depth.
At the end of the first set, I was left feeling a bit disappointed, but I was happy to stay for the second half because I wanted to see if the drummer would come out and use the drum kit, and if he did what effect it would have on the group’s sound.
Thankfully, the drummer came out and played the drum kit.
This was an improvement in my mind because the kit was more dynamic and interesting to listen to.
The violinist played an electric violin and spent time fiddling with effects pedals on the ground, which personally I felt was a bit gimmicky.
However, the violinist also brought out an electric bass guitar for two of the movements of the final piece.
When he was on the bass, I felt that the band was playing at their best, and I would even say they were interesting.
For all my criticisms though, I have to say the piano player seemed very talented.
The group was very tight, and they were always playing in time and were very together.
While I feel that it may be a bit disingenuous to call the Warp Trio’s performance a jazz show, they do seem to be a well practiced group of musicians.
However, I would consider a name change.

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Reviewer thrown by jazz trio name