Yes It Will

Rafiq Bhatia

Yes It Will, from guitarist Bhatia, is a breathtaking debut from a new boldface name. Magazines that so often decry jazz’s death surely must take this year off from that tired letter and click-generating screed. With a generation including Christian Scott, Robert Glasper, Vijay Iyer and supporting players, adding Bhatia creates a pack of young lions to rival history. Will is a densely packed set of organized chaos. Bhatia’s greatest skill is his unselfishness. Though his name is atop the bill, he readily gives up the spotlight to his band of unknowns, as well as guests Iyer and Billy Hart. The album’s closer, a cover of Sam Cooke’s “A Change is Gonna Come,” is a space-age deconstruction that only teases a handful of notes from the original, sweeping and delicate to the point of fragility. Stunning.