Fusion and rock group Ms. Nomer are releasing their debut full-length album TAOTUNU (IE; “things are on the up n up”) July 16. Ms Nomer’s music already pulls a jazz sound with their colorful chords and complex grooves, but the addition of the other three musicians pull them out of the “rock jam band” genre and into a jazz fusion realm, reminiscent of instrumental giants Herbie Hancock or Chick Corea.
The trio was established in 2019, jamming on stages across Northern Colorado, and on TAOTUNU, that trio has expanded, implementing a lot of extra instruments. Jonah Greene, Jacob Hoeffner, and Adam Petty branched out and brought on some local powerhouses like keyboardist Bharat Bhargava, saxophonist Joey LeClerc, and trumpet / trombonist Zach Rich. The horn lines and e-piano fills blend in perfectly on tracks like “Clear” and “Pears,” deeply enriching the record.
Ms. Nomer identifies as soul and funk, but they keep their sound interesting by introducing other influences. Their track “TimeWarp,” sticks out the most, sounding like a post-rock track from a band like “American Football.” Guitarist Petty is heard wailing all over the album, from a 70’s Jimi Hendrix style on “Kyle’s Frogs” to an 80’s Van Halen on “DadBod.” Already oozing with jazz influence, drummer Greene adds a deep level of arrangement in each tune, as opposed to simply keeping time. In “The Sauce” and “Milk,” Greene exploits every opportunity to play every hit he can.
Identifying as a trio is a bit of a misnomer, considering their friends appear all over TAOTUNU, but those additions add a welcome depth and fullness to the album. And that’s part of the point of this band. Their music goes beyond just the three of them.