Greg Ward Presents Rogue Parade, “The Contender”
by Nate Chinen, WBGO
Greg Ward is a Chicago-based alto saxophonist who knows how to reconcile different elements: acoustic and electronic, precise and volatile, inside and “out.” He has an arresting new album, Stomping Off From Greenwood, that brings this gift into clear focus, with a batch of new compositions for the band he calls Rogue Parade.
The album, just out on Greenleaf Music, marks a clear forward step for Ward as a composer and bandleader: it’s a collection of tunes that add up to a compelling arc, without requiring any high concept or explanatory hook. The band — guitarists Matt Gold and Dave Miller, bassist Matt Ulery and drummer Quin Kirchner — attacks every tune as a worthy challenge, including the track above, “The Contender,” whose title would seem to carry an obvious connotation.
For more information about Greg Ward, visit his website.