Nate Chinen, WBGO
Evolve is an apt title for the new album by saxophonist and flutist Sharel Cassity. A sleek expression of a modern language, it’s the clear by product of her recent experience on the bandstand, both out front and in the ranks (notably with the Revive Big Band). The writing on the album is confident and clear, and the playing delivers a grounded charge. On several tracks — including “New Day,” another Take Five premiere — she features Christie Dashiell on vocals, in a flexible R&B vein. Listen for the upbeat reassurance of the lyrics on “New Day,” along with the spirited back-and-forth between Cassity and trumpeter Marcus Printup; the crisp jazz-funk guitar work, from Mark Whitfield; and the airtight groove formed by Linda May Han Oh (electric bass) and Jonathan Barber (drums). (Evolve releases on Friday; sharelcassity.com.)
Listen to the live performance of “New Day” here!