New Love

“New Love”

(Motema Music)

If the music on New Love, Charnett Moffett’s seventh album for the Motéma label, sounds fresh and of-the-moment, it’s likely because the bassist and composer only shared it with his collaborators when they arrived at the studio. This bespeaks deep trust between Moffett and his bandmates, to one of whom he’s actually married. The relationship between Moffett and guitarist/Motéma label chief Jana Herzen, who wed in February 2019, provides the raw material for several of the songs on New Love, including the space-filled, Eastern-influenced title track. The bassist underlines his tender vocals with a frisson of fretless bass lines in the opening of the song, accompanied by Corey Garcia’s shimmering cymbals and Irwin Hall’s ethereal alto flute. The tune opens up as Moffett’s bass becomes the lead melodic voice, his virtuosity never obscuring the emotional content. Herzen’s textured electric guitar adds yet another joyful voice to the proceedings, before receding behind Moffett’s devotional vocals. Song themes throughout the album integrate both personal and universal love, but seem to reveal that Moffett, a former teen prodigy and son of jazz drummer Charles Moffett, is in a good pla

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