The Thaddeus Merritt Trio just released a new video that features their take on the Westbound Train instrumental “The Test”. Although this version of the tune is more stripped down than the Westbound version, it still contains the bustling energy that makes the song so lively. As with their first video, Thad’s fretless bass provides the lead on the song, and the improvisation on the horn licks from the original arrangement keep the song interesting through its 5 minute runtime.
Thad, who you know as the bassist from Westbound Train, The Toasters, and Void Union, is supported by his Westbound bandmate and Duppy Conquerors guitarist John DeCarlo (who is also the bandleader of John DeCarlo and Company). Rounding out the trio is drummer Jacob Cole, a newcomer to the Boston ska scene.
Here’s “The Test”, originally written by Rich Graiko of Westbound Train:
Additionally, here’s a video of a portion of the trio’s set last month at the Middlesex Lounge in Cambridge: