Forward is the latest offering from trumpeter and composer Chad McCullough, and showcases the international a-list rhythm section of pianist Rob Clearfield, bassist Matt Ulery, and drummer Jon Deitemyer. McCullough penned the compositions to showcase the group's malleable nature, and after nearly a decade of working together in various contexts, the interplay reaches new heights here. Composer and producer Ryan Cohan added his signature touch to the pieces with additional programming and part-writing, giving this album a feel that the sum is much larger than it's unique parts. Recorded during one of Clearfield's visits back to Chicago (his home before relocating to Paris last year), Forward is the first release under the trumpeter's name in nearly a decade. "I've been doing so much collaborative work, and wanted to make a different kind of statement with this release. Not that this isn't collaborative - in many ways it's more so, but I wanted to write music about places or experiences with meaning to me. I wanted to showcase the ensemble and give the trumpet a space to breathe in the middle of it all."