Jason Kenemy UpSideDownTown

Keyboardist Jason Kenemy's UpSideDownTown begins with an oriental feeling, rubato meditative piece that's quite unlike the more rhythmically-based tunes. It's peaceful and haunting. "The Turning" does have an eerie edge, but it's bluesier, with nice spaciousness. The leader gets into a good Vince Guaraldi groove on "Joyful and Knowing." But here, and on other pieces, is the frustrating aspect of the project: the drumming. While generally tight, it gets tied up in spots and, timing-wise, is off by a fraction of a second, giving parts of tunes an awkward, cluttered feel. The bass parts are simple and to the point, in the pocket, with no wasted notes, but "Dogs Walk On" unfortunately tends to plod. "Slow Red Building" returns to the pensive, moody vibe of the opener, with a lovely, spare melody and triple-metre. The disc is good when it's on, but could have used a picky producer's ear and a bigger budget for alternate takes. (Independent)