Read as much as you want on BostonGlobe.com, anywhere and anytime, for just 99¢.

Album Review | Jazz

Ben Monder, ‘Hydra’

Continue reading below

Some would argue that with the Big Three of modern jazz guitar — Bill Frisell, John Scofield, Pat Metheny — belongs a fourth, Ben Monder. At 51, Monder is roughly of the next generation, a go-to guy for the likes of Maria Schneider, the late Paul Motian, and all manner of indie-jazz projects. Here he is at his most exploratory, fashioning an orchestral album for his guitars plus bass, drums, and three vocalists. You won’t recognize many standard song forms or body-moving grooves. Instead the music mostly surges along in odd-metered patterns of beats, layered with multiple guitar sounds, and wordless vocals. “Elysium” shimmers with harp-like arpeggios and Gian Slater’s angelic voice gliding over the top. “Tredecadrome” offers the familiarity of rock-guitar distortion and phrasing, and the closing “Charlotte’s Song” is a lullabye setting of E.B. White. Most enthralling is the title tune, a symphonic narrative alternating passages of quiet transparency with thick weaves of sound. (Out Tuesday)

ESSENTIAL “Hydra”

Loading comments...
Subscriber Log In

You have reached the limit of 5 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com