Voice Choice by Dale Anderson

It's gratifying to see so many Buffalo musicians setting their sights on wider recognition, but for every one that does, there are dozens which are overlooked. To cite an example, while the media has given a long-overdue embrace to saxophonist Bobby Militello for his Heart & Soul album, they've ignored a pop-jazz effort which shares many of Militello's personnel.

The work in question is a seven-song album called No Brakes by West Seneca guitarist Tony Scozzaro. Acclaimed by his classmates and instructors at the Guitar Institute of Technology in Los Angeles, he's home fronting a potent trio called Anthracite and displaying other sides of his personality in the studio. Abetted at various moments by keyboardist Bobby Jones, bassist Jerry Livingston and Militello himself, Scozzaro shows himself to be an enormously fluid and sophisticated player. He can lay down a languid line reminiscent of Jeff Baxter's work with Steely Dan, then take flight into one of a dozen rock or jazz realms.

Team Scozzaro with an incisive lyricist-vocalist in place of the beatific Nick DiStefano and he might really turn some heads. In the meantime, No Brakes deserves a break from the jazz deejays around town. This boy can play.


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