Nicholas Brust delivers with Daybreak

Nicholas Brust
Nicholas Brust

Heralded as one of the premiere saxophonists of his generation, Boston-based Nicholas Brust has established his voice, both as an instrumentalist and a composer, in the world of modern instrumental music.

He has found his niche as a bandleader and composer, taking advantage of the numerous textures and combinations available in small-group improvised music, evident on his new recording, Daybreak, featuring Brust with guitarist Lage Lund, pianist Julia Chen, bassist Rick Rosato and drummer Gary Kerkezou. The album will be released on Outside In Music on February 17, 2023.

Daybreak is the follow up recording to Brust’s debut full-length album, Frozen in Time, released on Fresh Sound in 2020. The album received international critical acclaim from All About JazzJazz Journal UKModern Jazz TodayRootstime Music, and the Jazz Quad, among many others.

Brust has a crystalline sound, imbued with a life force, vitality and exuberance that is addictive. As Dan Bilawsky stated in All About Jazz, “this leader’s skills and solid intuition move beyond his writing and performing, as his personnel choices also reflect excellent taste.”

Indeed, his band is in lockstep with him throughout every tune on Daybreak, making for an elevated listening experience. Brust and his music sound at once completely familiar and brand new; in the tradition, while breaking new ground.

Brust has performed with numerous highly acclaimed musicians, including Gilad Hekselman, The Peter Silver Big Band (sharing the stage with Roy Hargrove, Jimmy Owens, Steve Wilson and others), guitarist Ben Eunson, Kristina Koller (appearing in her Quintet at the 2020 NYC Winter Jazz Fest), and many others. The saxophonist/composer is currently on faculty at New England Conservatory, in addition to maintaining his own private studio.

Nicholas released an EP of original music entitled Brooklyn Folk Songsin January 2015, which, “showcases a set of original compositions that infuse sturdy melodies with a rich, contemporary harmonic palette…like the borough for which it’s named – encompasses a variety of moods along with its own unique accent” (David Kastin).

Since then Brust has continued to showcase his compositional and improvisational talents both on his previous recording Frozen In Time (Fresh Sound, 2020), and in a series of videos that can be found on his YouTube channel. Brust has a Master of Music in jazz performance from New England Conservatory as well as a Bachelor of Music in jazz studies and music education from the Eastman School of Music.

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