They don’t make a move without injecting their music with sass. But Mostly Other People Do The Killing‘s explosive improv is anything but frivolous – and only a smidge sarcastic. The New York quartet blends puckishness and profundity, and their expertise at both has been obvious for a few years now. The Coimbra Concert, which captures them at their high-flying best, conjuring the eruption of Charles Mingus, the humor of Raymond Scott and the boisterous beauty of the Art Ensemble, is yet another wiseacre triumph (check my review of it on page 111 of this month’s Tone mag). But you really have to see ‘em on stage to get the full hit – especially the depth of drummer Kevin Shea’s swinging mania on a piece like “Round Bottom, Square Top.” That means it would be wise to head to Zebulon this evening. They may be serious improvisers, but they know from droll.
Other smart places to be this weekend: