New release from Derwin Daniels “Brighter Than This”

Derwin Daniels embraces a funky jazz sound in the joyful “Brighter Than This.” A powerful, muscular take on the classic saxophone-led sound helps to give the piece a strong sense of purpose. His ability to play the sax feels liberating. There is a lyrical quality to the way he approaches the sound. Without needing to say a single word, he paints a compelling picture. Rhythms have this driving groove that feels gorgeous. Bass and drums work together into one synched-up aspect. Volume is a given, which needs to be felt and heard to fully appreciate.

The song starts flawlessly, with no buildup, just going right into the middle of things. Bass takes a prominent lead in the piece, and when the drums kick up, the song has a muscular essence. Upon the saxophone entering the fray, everything starts to take shape. Melodies emerge from the saxophone, and the themes he explores feel gracious. A stately grace takes shape; his approach is a lovely update on the old-school style. Within the piece, he takes on a contemporary kick to the style. A buildup begins, and the piece has a graciousness that feels real. They let the theme gradually evolve on the cycle until it becomes undeniably infectious. The hooks run through the whole journey, and the song reaches a fantastic conclusion that takes from the past while pointing towards the saxophone’s future, which has been resurgent of late.

“Brighter Than This” has a powerful rush of color, with Derwin Daniels going for a physicality.