Review of MathGames!

Arriving at Martyrs’ like a solar wind from the most recent coronal mass ejection, MathGames is a pairing of three phenomenal musicians with Professor Fareed Haque at the lead. MathGames is striving to blend the style of Jazz with the musical possibilities presented by modern instrumentation. Alex Austin’s double bass provides a solid jazz platform that Fareed can work his phrasings into, while Fareed’s Moog guitar and Greg Fundis’ acoustic and electric drum kit open up new frontiers for the time honored genre. Fareed’s talents are uniquely suited to the Moog guitar, or maybe the Moog guitar is uniquely suited to Fareed’s talents. The guitar allows him to play a chord with three of the strings and while that chord sustains indefinitely Haque can play a jazzy run on the other three strings. The advanced instrument allows the jazz great to play with more than one voice at a time. Fareed may have a powerful ally in the form of his Moog guitar, but he was willing to lay it down and switch to one of his two acoustic guitars when the moment called for it. He also added his own beats to Fundis’ with vocal tabla rhythms. Fundis’ electric drums can sound like they are bouncing off the moon before reaching the audience’s ears or they can pierce through the air like lasers at the speed of light. Greg does a great job of balancing the styles of acoustic jazz trap drumming with electric percussion. His acoustic solos are clean and articulate, using the digital pads to spice his rhythms. He has a connection with Austin that creates a playground for Haque.

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