Carl Maguire's Floriculture Sided Silver Solid

Carl Maguire's Floriculture Sided Silver Solid
New York-based Carl Maguire has helmed Floriculture since 2001. As a composer, the new expanded version of the group provides him with a vast range of colours at his disposal, and Maguire dispatches the various combinations effectively. The front line of violist Stephanie Griffin, with her background in contemporary classical music, and Oscar Noriega's alto sax and clarinets blend in novel ways with Maguire's piano, bolstered by the rock solid rhythm section of bassist John Hébert and drummer Dan Weiss. The tunes are marked by angular yet captivating melodies. "Phonecia & Cordelia" features two such lines rubbing against each other before Noriega steps out with a concise yet tremendous solo, and "Basic Botany" features Hébert and Noriega (on bass clarinet) tag-teaming a bass line while Griffin and Maguire (on Rhodes) trade bursts of colour. As a pianist, Maguire's sound is aggressively off-kilter, with a nuanced sense of touch. The contrapuntal introduction to "Modern Enunciator" recalls Fred Hersch at his most Monk-ian. (Firehouse 12)