Matt Flinner Quartet Walking on the Moon

Mandolinist Matt Flinner has left behind acoustic bluegrass-laden ventures and has flung himself whole-heartedly into the jazz domain. Aided and abetted by electric guitarist Gawain Mathews, Flinner picks his way through ten jazz-grass expeditions, most suffering from schizophrenic genre-itis several times in the length of one song. Hairpin turns and inventive improv seem to be the band's mandate and it doesn’t hurt that Flinner's rhythm section just stepped off the funk train, giving songs like Ellington's "Caravan" a cool shot of adrenaline and hipness. The title track is an innovative homage to an innovative band as Flinner and crew jazz up a song from the Police's deepest reggae phase. And with tracks like the prog-improv "Shufflebeam" and "6/16," the Bonnaroo crowd won't be long noticing this quartet that has just as much in common with Medeski et al as it does with David Grisman. (Compass)