Mark Shim’s dark tone and angular phrases on tenor sax, often set to odd time signatures, have fostered a distinctive style reminiscent of a young Joe Henderson, a kinship made plain by his cover of the elder’s “Recorda Me.” This follow-up to Shim’s well-regarded 1998 debut, Mind over Matter, occasionally gets aeration from Stefon Harris‘s vibraphone and marimba and Edward Simon’s acoustic piano and electric Rhodes. As one of the last of vocalist Betty Carter‘s many protégés, Shim has developed spry, rhythmic reflexes.
While his more cerebral numbers (like the title track) can be a bit too diffident and cool, his exchanges with Harris’s marimba (“Survival Tactics“) and Simon’s piano (“Scorpio”) deliver joyful spunk without stinting on sophistication. The closing homage, “Eminence (For Betty Carter),” however, has a placidity uncharacteristic of Carter and suffers from Shim’s switch to the soprano horn. ~Britt Robson | Amazon
At your leisure, be sure and check out “TURBULENT FLOW” by Mark Sim