Jazz aligns with the Porsche, responsive when thrown a curve, a lithe and crafty machine.
Post bop jazz rumbles as a Porsche in paisley colors, all kinds of wildness to behold.
So it goes in the construct of Post Bop Revival. Settle in for a scenic ride when the instrumental quartet of hep-cat dudes ease to the stage of Bone Fire Smokehouse in Abingdon on Saturday, Aug. 17.
“We’re very different from what you’ll hear in this area,” said Dave Reimer, electric bass guitarist in Post Bop Revival. “It’s not bluegrass, not Americana, not rock. It’s different, but good.”
It’s jazz. Post Bop Revival center their sound primarily on jazz that emerged in the early 1960s. They look to Miles Davis, nod toward John Coltrane and lean heavily on Wayne Shorter.
“I’m more of a Wayne Shorter guy,” Reimer said. “I was also influenced by Miles’ electric stuff of the ’70s, which is some freaky stuff. The name, Post Bop Revival, it’s a cool name, but we’re not strictly post bop.”
James Grubb plays guitar. Tom Peterson airs a saxophone. Neal Reid maintains the beat on drums in tandem with Dave Reimer on electric bass guitar. They play jazz much as many jazz bands do, with certain form established, yet widened and elaborated upon through improvisation.
“Improvisation, very important,” Reimer said. “A lot of the time, we’ll pull a new song out of ‘The Real Book’ (a how-to compilation of jazz standards), and it might be a song I’ve never heard. It might be a waltz, a 4/4, or Bossa Nova. We just jump in. Heavy improvisation.”
Like objects tossed from a juggler’s hands, notes rise and fall methodically as well as repeatedly. They establish firm ground in the melody. Then, as if bidden by an unseen wild hair, notes veer outward then perhaps inward, roundabout and here to there, as if from the juggler’s hands the notes take upon direction of their own.
Notes, slung as if objects under the knees and back, may then spring forth in loop-de-loop or some other wild fashion. Such undulations, seemingly wrought from abandon, elicit gasps of oohs and ahhs — yet the notes do not crash as if to the floor.
Then it’s back to the melody. Methodical juggling of notes in the form of music well-practiced in the art of jazz concludes from song to song.
“This band is all about spontaneity,” Reimer said. “Sometimes we walk a tightrope, but it doesn’t fall apart. It stays fresh.”
Perhaps it’s Duke Ellington’s lush “Satin Doll.” Maybe they’ll tackle Charles Mingus’ sinewy “Goodbye Pork Pie Hat.” Oftentimes, Post Bop Revival dig their own bag of tunes.
“When we start the song off, you’ll hear the melody about two times to start off, then you’ll hear the improvisation,” Reimer said. “It’s all based around the melody. We’re definitely a groove-based band.”
Post Bop Revival veer wide of whatever constitutes mainstream music. They’re for adventurists, fans of music whose horizons seem boundless. Apply imagination to their music. Sync with the band on a journey to the center of melancholy to joy, outer space to inner space of the mind and the soul courtesy the heart.
“Playing jazz energizes me,” Reimer said. “We can play a three-hour gig and it’s like, damn, all of a sudden we’re wrapping up. I get lost in it in a good way.”