Acclaimed guitar-virtuoso Brian Seeger and his immensely talented group, Organic Trio, released their sophomore follow-up entitled Saturn’s Spell. Seeger, who holds the Alvin “Red” Tyler Professorship at UNO’s Jazz Studies Program, is joined by Jean-Yves Jung (France) on organ and Paul Wiltgen (Luxembourg) on drums, two other internationally acclaimed jazz musicians. Having traveled all over the world, it comes as no surprise that Seeger only comingles with the best.
Seeger’s guitar playing is exceptional and with his lifetime of experience, he is able to push the boundaries of a modern jazz guitar album and redefine the shape of that style. Saturn’s Spell comes in at over an hour long, but the “infectious grooves, stellar musicianship, and compelling compositions” challenge, invite, and captivate the listener, as one finds themselves deep in thought to the sound of Seeger’s rich tone and melodic improvisations, Jung’s percussive and rhythmic playing, and Wiltgen’s energetic and dynamic drumming.
Moments of groove, free jazz improvising, funky rhythms, and funk weave in and out across the 10 tracks. Seeger skates around the neck of guitar interspersing long and short notes to create space for the listener as they digest the rhythm section on 'The Place Is Now.' Seeger is successful in evoking his New Orleans roots and influence with the funky, bouncy, New Orleans style drumbeat and syncopated melody that serves as a nice break from the more exploratory compositions with the track 'Quirky.'
While the music is its own high-caliber force to be reckoned with, it’s complemented by the exceptional production quality. Recorded at Dockside Studios with David Farrell, Seeger employs the help of production virtuosos Neal Cappelino for mixing and Grag Calbi for mastering. The care and thought put into the mixing and mastering definitely adds to the music and allows for these stellar compositions to be presented in a manner that’s fitting for the music.
Saturn’s Spell, musically and aurally, is compelling, infectious, and graciously welcomed, as Seeger adds another diverse and exceptional group of compositions to his catalogue.