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John Scofield - Past Present / Kind of Jazz review

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Guitarist John Scofield comes across as a somewhat restless spirit, on record, at least, each project different from the last. Piety Street(2009) featured gospel and New Orleans music, whilst 54, released the following year, saw him collaborate with Vince Mendoza and the Metropole Orchestra. Since then, he has recorded an album of straight-ahead jazz (A Moment's Peace – 2011), returned to his groove-driven Überjam project (Überjam Deux – 2013) and reunited with jazz-funk band Medeski, Martin & Wood for two albums, Live (2011) andJuice (2014).

The title of his new album, Past Present, suggests he felt the time was right for a period of reflection about the past. This may well have had something to do with the tragic passing of his son, Evan, in 2013. Indeed, a couple of the song titles on the new record make reference to his son's illness. But it seems the time was also right for a period of musical reflection, as Scofield has chosen to reunite his quartet with Joe Lovano, who recorded three classic albums for Blue Note in the early 1990s. Bill Stewart returns on drums, and Larry Grenadier stands in for the late Dennis Irwin.   READ THE FULL Kind of Jazz REVIEW