Reviews

Rob Thorsen "Lasting Impression" Reviews

“Throughout this colorful set, Rob Thorsen and his musicians play with inspiration and creativity within the modern mainstream of jazz while also having fun."

Scott Yanow, writer and reviewer

“First, let me assert that jazz bassist Rob Thorsen ‘s name, address, and phone number is “mainstrean jazz." I can relate! That’s where I “live” too…My prediction is that Rob will establish himself (If he has not already done so) as one of the great classic jazz bass player icons today and for years to come."

George W. Carrol, the Musicians Ombudsman

“This well conceived and extremely well developed album presents bassist Rob Thorsen heading various small groups in a selection of attractive themes… First rate musicianship throughout makes this a fine example of todays jazz that sustains the post-bop tradition with flair and understanding."

SwingtoBop.com

“Much of lasting Impression leads listeners on a pleasant journey through San Diego’s contemporary jazz scene, and further demonstrates the talent emerging from that city. Thorsen’s unique take on standards is to be applauded, as they lend another perspective on oft-covered songs. Finally, his generosity toward fellow musicians allows the spotlight to shine on his very capable bandmates.”

Kit O’Toole, Blogcritics.com

“…Great listening music that is complex with universal appeal.
Thorsen excels using pace and dynamics to transform classic pieces…The music really swings!”

D. Oscar Groomes, www.OsPlace.com

“Rob Thorsen is part of that stable of local bass players who are the equal of anyone living in New York, New Orleans, or Los Angeles. His new album finds him surrounded by equal talent in locals such as trumpeter Gilbert Castellanos, pianist Geoffrey Keezer and drummer Duncan Moore running through a set of jazz standards and Thorsen originals in fine straight ahead fashion."

Jim Trageser, North County Times, San Diego

“Overall a very clean and well spaced recording that was easy to listen to. In order for mainstream to expand it’s audience with contemporary listeners, this is key, in my humble opinion. So, Kudos.”

John Marcus, Smooth Soul Online

“The eclectic nature of ‘Lasting Impression’ is entirely indicative of what Thorsen is all about and with 4 original compositions resting easily with his interpretations of songs from writers as diverse as Charlie parker, George Gershwin, Charles Chaplin and John Coltrane, there is something for everyone… Sometime sit’s nice to travel ‘straight ahead’ and Rob Thorsen’s ‘Lasting Impression’ is a delightful vehicle with which to do so.”

Denis Poole, SmoothJazzTherapy.com

Rob Thorsen "Moon Ray" Reviews

"This combination of melodic craft and economy that provide the hallmarks of Thorsen’s style. These qualities serve him well on his latest album, "Moon Ray", as he injects his own flavor into classics by Thelonius Monk, Hoagy Carmichael, and others, with sterling musical support from drummer Duncan Moore, ex- San Diego pianist Randy Porter and the superb trumpeter Gilbert Castellanos."

George Varga, San Diego Union Tribune October 16th, 2005.

"Moon Ray is like a conversation with an old and dear friend with whom you can feel at ease and can talk about everything. It sounds familiar yet you can discover new aspects with each close listening. The playing is flawless and inspiring which makes this album perfect for listening to from beginning to end and over again. Highly recommended!

Jazz not Jazz, July 13th, 2005

"The record has an interesting polish, it lies to the left of lounge with a patina acheived from the hip jazz clubs of old. Decisive, purposeful renderings of jazz chestnuts without a whit of self-glorification. Thorsen gives his boys, Gilbert Castellanos, Randy Porter, and Duncan Moore, three of my favorites-room to move. It is a shaft of sunlight to the brain".

Dave Good, San Diego Reader, June 2005.

Rob Thorsen "Evolution" Reviews

Evolution is classic jazz at it’s purest. Performed by players with a grasp on both the essence of the music as well as the abilities of their instruments, the disc could legitmately be given as the correct answer to the question, "What is good jazz".

Lance Vargas, La Jolla Light

Thorsen’s release "EVOLUTION", is a sterling outing for the bassist and runs down 10 cuts. Thorsen gets a rich melodic tone from his bass that is offset beautifully by the elegant piano of Mike Wofford.

San Diego Union Tribune/Jazz Alley, May 2003

Their well balanced mainstream modern program includes several attractive Thorsen originals along with some standards and a few classic tracks from the likes of Billy Strayhorn and Thelonius Monk. Thorsen’s propulsive walking bass line in Strayhorn’s "Intimacy of the blues" complements his lovely reading of the classic "Besame Mucho". But these are just a few examples of the nature and quality of the music on this successful album.

Cadence Magazine, February 2003

San Diego bassist Rob Thorsen brings a skilled group of homeys, notably the great pianist Mike Wofford for a session devoted to bop, ballads, and blues. Among the standouts were "Would You"; "Let’s Fall in Love"; a couple of rare Strayhorn gems in Intimacy of the Blues and Drawing Room Blues; Monk’s Evidence and some energetic Thorsen originals. Dependable and straight ahead is the order of the day. Azica Records, 2002 3 1/2 stars.

Jazz Scene Note, KMHD Radio, Portland, Oregon

Bassist Rob Thorsen and his associates shine with this dynamic session of classic jazz tinged with salsa, blues, and bop. The recording seems spontaneous yet is precise. There is never a dull moment. The array of instruments used, and the creative license employed by their owners, add a variety of melodic transitions, which are executed in a classy and unobtrusive manner.

Mary Montgomery, Hometown CDs, San Diego Reader, July 2004

Rob Thorsen Quartet "First Impression" Reviews

Many of the best sets of music have a difficult to define quality of taut looseness, at once relaxed and surging. This CD carries such a quality. First Impression delivers proud tight comfortable music worth listening to over and over.

Jim Merod, Jazz Now magazine, July 1997

Together the musicians have the tight but explaratory feel of the sixties Miles Davis quintet, a quality that serves them well… This set is definitely worth investing time and money in.

Cadence Magazine, July 1998

…A very nice Jazz album with spirited playing from all members of this well integrted group. With an exceptionaly good sound, clear resonant and acoustic, and a good lock-up with loose limbed drummer Brett Sanders, Thorsen sounds great in the rhythm section… This superior CD should do an excellent job of promoting this excellent group.

Double Bassist Magazine, Winter 1998

It’s always a pleasure to run into first-class operation, especially one in our own backyard. In the case of this recording from the San Diego based RobThorsen Quartet, it’s a double pleasure. Not only do bassist Thorsen and his cohorts offer a tasty collection of ten straight ahead performances… the Websters Last Word label has put together one of the most innovative and creative disc packages around.

T. Michael Crowell, San Diego Union-Tribune