This Meets That (Emarcy)
John Scofield

By Martin Kasdan Jr.

This Meets That marks John Scofield's first recording for a revived Emarcy label (B0009774, distributed by Universal) and his second to feature what he sometimes calls his "Real Jazz Trio," with bassist Steve Swallow and drummer Bill Stewart. Unlike the prior live recording En Route by this lineup, this is a studio effort and is augmented by a quartet of horn players, as well as a guest appearance by Bill Frisell on the folk standard "House of the Rising Sun." What struck me about this recording is how the horns frequently seem to emerge organically from Sco's sustained lines, rather than being some afterthought or mere "horn section." Sco himself did the horn arrangements, which may explain the simpatico feel. From the opening notes of the first song, "The Low Road," to the grin-producing closer "I Can't Get No Satisfaction," this is a worthy addition to the discography of this distinctive guitarist. Stewart's drumming combines a light touch with a deep feel for funk and soul, while Swallow's unique electric basswork not only provides a foundation but also intertwines with the leader's fretwork to create a larger-than-trio sound.