Kim Pensyl – At The Moment (2001)

FrontCover1Kim Pensyl is best known as a jazz-pop keyboardist, one who recorded popular crossover sets for Optimism, GRP, and Shanachie. However, At the Moment is quite a bit different, for on this set Pensyl is cast in the role of a hard bop trumpeter! Pensyl actually began playing trumpet when he was 12, but on his own previous recordings had not really stretched out on trumpet, so it is a surprise to hear him interacting quite comfortably on this fairly advanced straight-ahead jazz set with tenor saxophonist Bob Shepard, pianist Joey Calderazzo, bassist Chuck Bergeron, drummer Adam Nussbaum, and (on three numbers) trombonist John Fedchock. Influenced most by Miles Davis of the 1950s (particularly when muted), Freddie Hubbard, and Woody Shaw, Pensyl holds his own with the other notable players on 11 of his originals. The music is often driving (Shepard eats up the chord changes), Joey Calderazzo is a major asset, and the performances display plenty of heat. The individual songs are not overly memorable but the playing on a whole is of high quality, there are plenty of mood and tempo variations, and it is a happy surprise to realize that Kim Pensyl is such an excellent trumpeter. (by Scott Yanow)

Chuck Bergeron (bass)
Joey Calderazzo (piano)
Adam Nussbaum (drums)
Kim Pensyl (trumpet)
Bob Shepard (saxophone)
John Fedchock (trombone on 04., 07. + 10.)

01. Crossed Up 5.59
02. Frosted Lemons 6.48
03. No One But You 6.36
04. Stolen Encounter 4.26
05. Miles’ Lament 6.41
06. Rulers 5.52
07. The Hubster 5.36
08. Petals 9.23
09. Once Before 6.08
10. Blues for Monk 7.54
11. Linda Theresa 6.23

All compositions by Kim Pensyl