Michael Formanek’s Ensemble Kolossus Reviewed

Source: burning ambulance.

Michael Formanek, the double-bassist, composer, and music educator, has put together a group that tweaks that tidy narrative for The Distance, his new album on ECM. (Get it from Amazon.) Recording as Ensemble Kolossus, Formanek’s group is unapologetically a big band. Guitar and marimba augment the standard three-piece rhythm section of piano, bass, and drums, and the horn section features five saxophones (with some of the players sitting in on clarinet and flute as well), three trumpets and a cornet, and four trombones.