Chris Cody Coalition - ConscriptSometimes lyrical, sometimes playful, sometimes funny, always subtle … a fine disc.
Jazz Magazine, France
This is the sound of midnight in Paris, where expat Aussie Chris Cody maintains a band with the same piano-trombone-bass-drums line-up he uses in Sydney. In fact, trombonist Glenn Ferris even sounds a little like local cohort James Greening in his fruity tone, as well as producing some humorous and eerie multiphonic effects. Lyrical sparseness is a strength of Cody’s piano and his composing, something that helps ensure the pieces are engagingly diverse without losing that midnight mood.
John Shand, Sydney Morning Herald, Oct. 5, 2007 ****
The restless rhythms immediately impact like a chorus of castanets, while the pianist’s balladry attracts like the smell of a freshly baked baguette. Ex-Zappa & Lacy trombonist Glenn Ferris is featured heavily with his abundant flow of fervent ideas seemingly expressed with ease, from breathy and intimate to fidgety, festive and boisterous. Sydney pianist Cody has been based permanently in Paris since 2000 and it seems his art has been allowed to blossom. While clear melody lines exist in all 11 selections, dynamic impetus shifts maintain an ‘edge of your seat’ feeling to the vast majority of these impeccably recorded works.
**** Jazz and Beyond
Sydney pianist Chris Cody’s CV contains an impressive list of global co-performers and a long string of accolades, beginning at age 14 when he was a finalist in the Roger Woodward Piano Scholarship. Now based in Paris, his fifth CD comprising 11 original tracks has American trombonist Glenn Ferris accompanied by Cody’s bright, sparkling piano, with Bruno Rousselet on double bass and drummer Laurent Robin. The music is wide and spacious with occasional humourous touches and tempo changes, yet always preserves strong rhythms. Ferris’ trombone is outstanding: murmuring expressively in the low register for And Did She Follow? striding out jauntily on Conscript, or triple tonguing a driving staccato solo in Slippery. Cody’s compositions are melodic - some are quite mainstream - with strong grooves, and the quartet articulates them with a precise integration especially noticeable in the bass and percussion collaboration on the title track. The leader’s piano supplies organic harmonies and intelligent solos, perfectly supporting the trombone in its sometimes comical throwbacks to earlier styles as in Chromatose.
John McBeath, The Australian
With an intriguing energy the disc Conscript begins with suspense, ideal to open hostilities. The “Coalition” of Chris Cody functions from the first notes like a well-oiled machine…
The compositions of the Australian pianist leave space as much for through composition as more poetic sonic flights, while passing by a brief look at jazz in all its culture, and all that at times with lots of humour.
At once rolling and tender, jolting and caressing, the spirit of surprise dominates, easy to understand when you know the formidable mischievousness of the protagonists. The relationship between them is not only fusional, but a functional interaction. The result is an well groomed CD with an excellent sound and mix. One can never salute enough the talent of these musicians or honour the richness of their groove…The very personal sound of Chris Cody’s voicings permanently invoke Beauty. This aesthetic is close to the European sound but in this quartet, swing comes back at a gallop, profound and penetrating with typically Afro-American harmonies suspended above.
Nothing but positives in this disc that transports us with the eternal joie de vivre that is jazz.
Tristan Loriaut, Les Dernières Nouvelles de Jazz
A very beautiful album. The pianist’s compositions reflect the diversity of his tone: a touch both firm and singing, a deliberately rapid phrasing, but that never loses sight of the melody, a taste for full fleshed harmonies sometimes close to gospel … what gives a particular flavour to this disc is for a large part the interaction between the piano of Cody and the eminently vocal trombone of Glenn Ferris…an album that as it unfolds tenderly and majestically, seduces you to the charm of an inspired interpretation of which the atmosphere will haunt you a long time. Magical!
Piano Magazine, France
Some of the best musicians of the moment for an exhilarating disc…a feast of melody…an inspiration never at fault…a facility for improvisation that leaves you stunned … an absolute mastery…everyone expresses himself marvellously on the compositions of Cody who is an excellent pianist…another example of a jazz that knows the evolution towards the avant garde but stays anchored on lasting values, and privileges feeling, beauty and melody.