The second movement of Nathan East’s long-awaited career as a solo artist is this potent package, which looks and reads like a duo disc in the tradition of Bill Evans/Eddie Gomez or Keith Jarrett/Charlie Haden, but is quite a bit more. The opening title track and “Oliver’s Bag” indeed find James on piano and East on his penetrating Yamaha Silent Bass making a swinging connection (as they did on “Moodswing,” from Nate’s 2014 solo debut). “All Will Be Revealed” is the first dizzying departure, with the Nashville Recording Orchestra supporting East’s Metheny-esque wordless vocal melody and sing-and-play electric bass solo. The orchestra remains for a Vince Gill-led reimagination of Patsy Cline’s “Crazy,” the sweeping ballad “Waltz for Judy,” the percussion-propelled “Canto y la Danza,” and the all-electric bass “Turbulence”—the last three summoning James’ ’70s CTI landscapes. Gravitating back to tasteful two-play, “Midnight Magic,” “Seattle Sunrise,” and “Ghost of a Chance” best showcase the interactive, intuitive sides of the pair, free to start conversations and finish each other’s sentences.
Nathan East's Fiery Solo Return
Even though Nathan East didn’t rev up his solo career until 2014, with his Grammynominated self-titled debut, it seems like he has flashed solo-artist potential since cracking the session and touring scene in the early ’80s, with his melodic, vocally phrased bass lines and scat-and-play solos.