The John Carlini Quartet's newest release The Game's Afoot! Presents original acoustic music uniquely arranged and orchestrated using the influences from the idioms of bluegrass, jazz and classical music. Carlini's music on this release blends influences and experiences from his diverse musical background. 'Since my early days with the David Grisman Quintet,' Carlini recalls, 'internally I heard these instruments playing within the context of combining orchestrated music with improvisation with no limitations to the harmonic and linear content of the music. I think of it as a Miles Davis-type group playing on bluegrass instruments.' Using the talents of first-rate jazz musicians who were equally adept in the bluegrass genre, John's challenge to the band members was thay they be able to discuss Bill Monroe and John Coltrane in the same sentence and seamlessly blend those musical expressions in their execution of these tunes. Carlini describes the recording process as 'the essence of jazz' in that there were no overdubs. 'It was important to me that the band was reacting to each other, within the parameters of the arrangements, but that there was also the element for the unexpected, which is an essential part of this music,' Carlini explains. For Carlini, bringing the talents of Don Stiernberb (mandolin) and Pat Cloud (banjo) to the band represents a 'perfect fit.' He explains: 'Don and Pat are jazz musicians who just happen to play mandolin and five-string banjo. Behind any jazz player are years of a specific kind of practice and experience, and that work is highly usual on these instruments. Don and Pat have the musical instincts inherent in all great jazz players. They have the ability to handle any musical situation. They first time I jammed with them I knew that they were the right guys for this music and I know that they would be a great match for my long-time rhythm section, Brian Glassman (bass) and Steve Holloway (drums and percussion).' From the liner notes by Tony Rice: 'The music created here by the John Carlini Quartet with Pat Cloud is serious music worthy of serious listening. Miles Davis once said that when pianist, Bill Evans, played a chord it was perceived as more of a 'sound' than a chord per se. And so it is here, played by well-seasoned, well-schooled musicians, playing together as a unit to create a pleasant listening experience.'