Geoff Chapman, March/April 2008
The debut disc of a quintet co-led by Murley, Tara Davidson (his one-time student) and pianist David Braid was taped at Vancouver’s Western Front. With eight tracks contributed by band members, this approach is more subtle than searing. The group oozes confidence, especially Davidson’s flying high alto on her own “Code Breaking.” Not surprisingly, the excellent Braid makes potent contributions over the seventy minutes of music, supplying graceful charts—such as the appealing gospel-tinged “Say A Silent Prayer”—and adding melancholic musings to his solo feature “Wash Away.” This unit displays nimble solo turns and melodic charm as well as meaningful layered densities. Murley’s tenor efforts are outstanding throughout.