Album Remarks & Appraisals:
"Ever since he signed with the Verve label a few years back, guitarist John Scofield has been on the upswing of the trendy movement we'll call, for lack of a better term, the "Acid Jazz" scene. He scored really big with A Go Go, his critically-acclaimed 1998 collaboration with the supergroup Medeski, Martin, and Wood. Now Bump enters the ring and it becomes immediately evident from the opening strains of "Three Sisters" that this one's going to be another knockout.
Damn near as funky and danceable as its predecessor, Bump pushes the envelope just a bit further with a mild "techno" flavor thrown into the proverbial bubbling and boiling stew. A case in point, the saucy jumbalaya of "Beep Beep" includes drummer Eric Kalb's "Nawlins second-line" groove, Scofield's overdubbed acoustic and electric guitars, and keyboard samples akin to Bill Laswell's industrial twang. The hooks abound, with Scofield's writing cagey enough and adequately varied to insure your alertness, from the sullen moodiness of "Kilgeffen" to "Swinganova's" sprightly samba beat.
Hangin' with some of the homeboys of the younger set, Scofield draws on a number of different rhythm combinations, with players on hand from such groups as Deep Banana Blackout, Sex Mob, and Soul Coughing, along with the return of MMW's Chris Wood on bass. As an added bonus for those of you with the computer peripherals to handle it, this enhanced disc sports a 10-minute segment featuring an interview spot with Scofield and footage in the recording studio. Of course, even without the added visuals, the ear candy's sweet enough to keep you "Bump in'" for hours.Collective" -AllAboutJazz
"John Scofield, who's played with everyone from Miles and Mingus to Medeski Martin and Wood, has finally gone and done released a classic of 21st century groove jazz. Not exactly the Hammond-style soul jazz of it's predecessor A Go Go, Bump - one of those rare cases where the sequel surpasses the original - attains pure groove nirvana, and pretty much straight-ahead gratis <>. He's taken his own highly personalized guitar and composition styles (still apparently able to play anything he can think), plucking chords and slicing off stubborn single notes like sausage segments into unpredictable, snake-fingered-like twisting runs, and applied it to groove. It's just a little less "out-field," more "infield," but still Scofield<>. Also, for the first time he really experiments with sonic possibilities, tweaking timbre with sparingly sprinkled guitar FX, acoustics, multiple overdubs, and thankfully subtle keyboard soundscapes. Think Jimmy Smith covers Another Green World ?!? Or Another Grant Green World ?!? Primary directive, though, as he himself says, "I wanted even more of as funky feel than I got before." Yep.
Straight down to biznizz with Déjà vu-spurring opener "Three Sisters," you think "I know this song," and although you don't, in another time and place - say 1967 - it could've been a funky radio hit. Other highlights include a swell, Zappa-esque squishy-wah wah lead on "Beep Beep"; bongos a-blazing, bossa nueveau<> lounge on "Swinganova," perfect for a David Lynch remake of La Dolce Vida "; "Groan Man," which sports Classic Funk Sound #43, the old chunky, gurgly, bubbly Starsky-wakka-jawakka wah wah guitar; and finally the space age Booker T. -sound of "Kelpers," a great jumping groove with a catchy octave riff. (Named for funky "free-form" audience dancers, the writer must admit to his own share of oddly unstoppable, dorky gyrations at a recent Scofield show).
No matter how far out of bounds from local Groovesville he goes with harmonics, timbre or technique, on Bumphe always returns to the continually chugging groove orbit, and it doesn't let up for (close to) one solid, classic hour of prime uncut funk. This is dance and groove played by first-rate jazz musicians. You kids can go take your machines and play in someone else's backyard. This is for the big boys." -AllAboutJazz
Entertainment Weekly (3/24/00, p.103) - "...another groove-lined affair, full of steamy, infectious rhythms and choice guitaring....Smart, arty party music." - Rating: B+
Alternative Press (7/00, p.110) - 3 out of 5 - "...Reaffirms his commitment to just keep doing what he does, with solid results....[He] dishes up a surprisingly cohesive assortment of funk, blues and Cajun-infected fare, unclichTd jazz-rock and the occasional quirky tone poem..."
CMJ (3/20/00, p.26) - "...Scofield's singular technique and insatiable desire to push each jam to a creative peak...makes BUMP a resounding treat for both the ears and feet."
This is an Enhanced audio CD which contains regular audio tracks and multimedia computer files.
Personnel includes: John Scofield (acoustic & electric guitars); Mark De Gli Antoni (keyboards); Tony Scherr, Chris Wood (acoustic & electric basses); David Livolsi (electric bass); Eric Kalb, Kenny Wollesen (drums); Johnny Almendra (bongos, congas, tambourine, percussion); Johnny Durkin (congas).
Recorded at Avatar Studios, New York, New York in 1999.
Audio Mixer: Joe Ferla.
Photographer: Ken Schles.
John Scofield has always been a jazz improviser in funk-rocker's garb, from his days at Berklee College of Music to his three-year stint touring and recording with Miles Davis in the '80s. He follows up his much-acclaimed Medeski, Martin & Wood collaboration A GO GO with another all-star groove fest that burrows ever deeper into the funk.
Scofield spins a rainbow of tone colors from his electronic trick bag while his guests-Medeski, Martin and Wood bassist Chris Wood, Soul Coughing sample wizard Mark De Gli Antoni, and the rhythm sections of jam band faves Sex Mob and Deep Banana Blackout--keep the big beats flowing. "Three Sisters" and the stuttering "Drop & Roll" are Crescent City soul struts peppered with wah-wah, digital delay and the guitarist's axe run through a Leslie organ amp. And for a little Latin flavor, Scofield kicks it with a seductive, samba-fied trio on "Swingnova."