Adam O’Farrill – Stranger Days (2016)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/88,2 kHz | Time – 1:03:33 minutes | 1,12 GB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Master, Official Digital Download – Source: HDTracks | Booklet, Front Cover | © Sunnyside Communications
Though he has only been at it for a short time, Adam O’Farrill has displayed maturity in his music beyond his 21 years. The young trumpeter/composer was introduced to the music world early on and quickly ascertained the importance of history, hard work and collaboration to realize his voice as an artist. On his debut recording as a leader, Stranger Days, O’Farrill introduces his fantastic and highly interactive quartet of the same name, showcasing distinctive and subtly programmatic original pieces.
The Brooklyn born and raised O’Farrill comes from a celebrated musical lineage: his grandfather, the Cuban composer/arranger Chico O’Farrill; his father, pianist and composer Arturo O’Farrill; and his mother Alison Deane, a classical pianist. Growing up in a musically rich environment, his parents showing him everything from Oscar Peterson to Steely Dan to Olivier Messiaen, it was only natural that he fell into it, first with piano lessons and then to the trumpet when he was 8 years old.
Trumpeter Adam O’Farrill is still very young, but that is not keeping him from making waves with his debut album Stranger Days and band of the same name, comprised of O’Farrill, tenor saxophonist Chad Lefkowitz-Brown, bassist Walter Stinson and his older brother, drummer Zack O’Farrill.
Of course, it does not hurt to have Chico O’Farrill as your grandfather and Arturo O’Farrill as your father either, and neither does his recent work with Rudresh Mahanthappa and his Bird Calls band, but his music and musicianship most assuredly stands on its own.
This is mature music with much to say; it is neither mainstream nor avant-garde, but takes chances within an understandable framework. Most importantly, these pieces tell stories, some more overt than others, and in then the end, these players become known to the listener.
Stranger Days is a real band whose members know each other well, which the music makes perfectly clear, and they want you to know them also. The cumulative effect of the album (Zack O’Farrill’s liner notes state that the album should be listened to from beginning to end) is startling—the band is speaking, telling stories, their stories, through their music which is somehow simultaneously abstract and personally concrete.
It matters not if one knows the details of what any track is “about,” although their order has an importance beyond pacing. All of this band’s music has clarity, finesse, sharp wit and not a little bit of swagger. Although O’Farrill is the leader, the band is clearly a cooperative affair.
Stranger Days is a fabulous recording that sounds completely fresh and alive even after repeated listenings. Definite Best of 2016!
01 – A & R Italian Eatery
02 – The Stranger
03 – Survival Instincts
04 – Why She Loves
05 – Aligator Got the Blues
06 – Forget Everything You’ve Learned At School
07 – The Cows and Their Farmer Walt
08 – The Courtroom
09 – Building the Metamorphosen Bridge
10 – Lower Brooklyn Botanical Union
Adam O’Farrill – trumpet
Chad Lefkowitz-Brown – tenor sax
Walter Stinson – bass
Zack O’Farrill – drums