Posted on

Nick Bewsey praises the harmonic grooves of “Standing Tall”

Ken Fowser  four 1/2 stars
Standing Tall – Posi-Tone

After co-leading four records on the Posi-Tone label with vibraphonist Behn Gillece, tenor saxophonist Ken Fowser revs his own engine on his fast and furiously entertaining debut release, Standing Tall. A former University of the Arts student in Philadelphia, Fowser has crafted
a free-wheeling gem, boldly exploring harmonic grooves and smooth, textured rhythms with a fine band that seduces on ear-friendly tracks like “Head Start,” thrills with fleet changes on “Mode For Red,” and chills you out with the cool blues, “Filling In The Blanks.” Well-conceived and spirited in execution, his assertive compositions are
punched up by his quintet of up-andcoming players and the in-demand pianist Rick Germanson. Fowser not only succeeds in making a terrific modern jazz record, he brings an original, contemporary voice and a resounding agenda to swing, along with fond echoes of early jam records made by Philly greats like Benny Golson, McCoy Tyner and Prestige era Coltrane. (12 tracks; 59 minutes)