On Before the Rain, tenor saxophonist-composer Noah Preminger makes it clear that his widely praised debut album, Dry Bridge Road, was no fluke. This debut for Palmetto Records, is marked by the same sense of adventure and exploration, but even greater lyricism, compositional depth, and group interplay. Working with familiar associates, pianist Frank Kimbrough, bassist John Hebert, and drummer Matt Wilson, Preminger opts for an album of mostly ballad-tempo performances that give everyone in the band the opportunity to delve into some highly nuanced solo and ensemble playing. An album of ballads is not what one usually expects from a young player on his second release. But by defying expectations, Preminger has created one of the most powerfully beautiful discs of the year.
Preminger s recording debut, Dry Bridge Road (Nowt Records) was one of the most widely hailed albums of 2008, earning a Best Debut of the Year nod from by Village Voice Jazz Critics Poll, and Top 10 album of the year honors in more than a dozen other publications, including JazzTimes, The Nation, and Stereophile. ‘Preminger seems to have arrived on the scene fully formed, with incisive musical instincts, a distinctive personal sound, and an ability to write great tunes’ enthused Jazz Review. Since moving to New York after graduating from New England Conservatory in 2008, Preminger has become a regular fixture in the city s clubs. He appears regularly with Cecil McBee’s Transcend quartet, the John McNeil Group, and the Rob Garcia quartet.