Press

 

Rebecca Hennessy’s full-length debut is as much about the environment as it behaves as one… It all comes off like a rich ecosystem of sonic lifeforms, cohabitating in the same melodic environs. Her sextet of trumpet, trombone, tuba, piano, guitar, and percussion bring a larger sound than their numbers might otherwise indicate, and deftly balances it out with a delicate touch.

Dave Sumner – Bandcamp Daily/Bird Is The Worm

…this ear opening, energetic set is everything the sitting down jazz fan could ask for and more. Killer stuff on a rampage throughout.

Chris Spector – The Midwest Record

It’s a one-two punch beginning that says this is a different type of brass band. And this dynamic group keeps proving it over the course of seven more diverse tunes. The instrumental combination isn’t all that odd, but the way the individual voices are used—the arrangements—are out of this world: the modernistic, rock-inflected guitar, the tuba’s deep throb, the angelic horn harmonies and the creative and virtuosic solos stirred up distinctively, more Henry Threadgill’s Zooid at times than traditional New Orleans. If the question is: “Exactly who in this group is instrumental to its success?” the answer would have to be “Everyone.”… Two Calls is a uniquely enchanting recording. A wide-ranging yet coherent artistic statement. Credit Rebecca Hennessy’s compositions and arrangements, the individual instrumentalists and their immersion in the group concept, and add a couple of nods to producer Jean Martin for the sound shaping and, on two tunes, the studio atmospherics added with the help of cellist/bandleader/composer Andrew Downing.

Dan McClenaghan – All About Jazz (4.5/5 Stars)

On this diverse collection, each setting is carefully structured to allow for individual voices to emerge yet different enough that each piece marks out its own special zone. Solo and ensemble playing is consistently tight and of the highest calibre, and the resplendent unison playing of the horns is a constant source of pleasure. Put simply, the album’s distinguished by world-class playing that would sound great on any festival stage, Toronto or otherwise.

Ron Schepper – Textura.org

Two Calls is one of the most auspicious debut jazz albums I’ve heard in a long time, and surely points to a good future for Rebecca Hennessy.

Lynn Bayley – The Art Music Lounge

Be prepared for a journey on this album as Rebecca Hennessy and FOG take you through a few different realms of jazz combining rock, fusion, world sounds, New Orleans style brass and some beautiful, almost ambient pieces that will take you places beyond the limits of your mind. Expert and creative musicianship all round with original compositions that ebb and flow together to create a musical adventure for the senses.

Memphis Marty Delia – The Jazz Music Blog

If the term “less is more” ever elicited a vivid example to go along with it, this disc Two Calls by Rebecca Hennessy’s FOG Brass Band would be it. Rarely do performers shine in all their radiant apparel, creating an unmatched nimbleness of sound, as Hennessy and her ensemble. This is no stripped-down interplay but a fulsome recreation of the evocative dialogue between a trumpeter and her band… Among the choicest encounters on this disc are Birds for Free and Why Are You So Sad Booker Little? The rest of the melodically exquisite songs are also beautifully crafted; a combination of ingenious writing and inspired improvisation on the part of Hennessy and her ensemble. The vitality and brilliance of each invention shines forth in the strongest and most appealing orchestral colours.

Raul da Gama – The WholeNote

Ron Weinstock – In A Blue Mood

The contemporary music scene, while not financially breaking new ground, certainly has produced a number for fine young bands and composers. Rebecca Hennessy’s FOG Brass Band covers a wide swath of musical territory over the 48 minutes of “Two Calls” and the journey is very rewarding. This album is not only “fun” to listen to, as brass band music often, but also melodically rewarding and adventurous.

Richard B. Kamins – Step Tempest

[Rebecca] gives you just under 50 minutes of original and inspired work; just listen to the ultra-high-energy opener, “Red Herring” and you’ll hear and feel the uncompromising creativity the band showers upon your ears; though this is clearly an arranged piece, it comes across with a real feeling of being improvised! The more pensive “Mutterings” doesn’t sound muttered in the least bit, though the dialog between the players is clearly audible… seamless recording really amplifies the clarity, too.

Dick Metcalf – Improvijazzation Nation

“Horn Lake” projects a tranquility with its chamber brass opening followed by a stately piano interlude and a lovely trumpet solo with the ensemble entering and generating a bit of intensity. It is a performance that displays her compositional and organizational talents as well as her marvelous musicianship… Ms. Hennessy shines as a composer and soloist,

and the FOG Brass Band is an outstanding ensemble.

What is striking here are the arrangements which in this case are probably simply the construction of the tunes as written… The music is quite varied in many styles from N.O. brass band and Bo Didley beats to bits of rock wailing to forlorn soundscapes, there is even a touch of South African rhythm… Lots of fun with potential for expansion.

Robert Rusch – Cadence Magazine

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