My favorite overlooked trumpeter is New York veteran John McNeil
, a wry, witty player who adds forward-looking accents to the language of west-coast jazz. Lately he's found simpatico partners half his age—saxophonist Jeremy Udden
, bassist Aryeh Kobrinsky, and drummer Anthony Pinciotti—in the quartet Hush Point
. Last month they dropped their third album, Hush Point III
(Sunnyside), on which they sound more confident and intimate than ever—they seem to be able to anticipate one another's moves via some sort of musical telepathy. Hush Point's version of jazz, while providing a perfect showcase for solos, is rooted in an old-school ensemble mentality—and few experiences in music give me more pleasure than hearing two (or more) skilled improvisers tease out sophisticated melodies together, exploiting their knowledge of harmony to glide across a tightrope without getting tangled up.