"Germain, a post-Jaco, post-Patitucci burner on six-string bass, turned in some stunning chordal passages and fleet-fingered single note lines on this percolating Latin jazz number......Germain also contributed a lyrical bass solo on this piece that recalled Joe Zawinul’s Weather Report ode for Jaco, 'A Remark You Made'........Ralph Towner’s off-kilter funk number “Creeper," which featured a monstrous bass solo by Germain and also showcased McCandless’ sheer command on bass clarinet."
-Bill Milkowski

"Your CD is very beautiful. Thank you for the song in my honor (Bellabou Baion). Keep mixing it up"
-Hermeto Pascoal

"If you love traditional jazz and have an equal appreciation of funk and Brazilian music, you need to get a copy of 'Before You Go' by bassist/composer Aaron Germain. Seldom have I heard a young artist bursting out of the gates with such maturity in craftsmanship and compositional skills alike. This record is surprisingly well balanced, thanks to an excellent ensemble of seasoned musicians who bring the skill, the vibe AND the love. I have worked with John McLaughlin, Wayne Shorter and Zakir Hussain, to name a few, and I am not easily impressed. But in the case of 'Before You Go', I am! Bravo!"
-Kai Eckhardt

"On his new album Chance, the San Francisco Bay Area’s Aaron Germain brings his impressive chops to a set of compositions demonstrating his take on jazz, blues, and fusion. Using both electric and upright basses to lead his live band, Germain’s lightning-fast licks shine on songs like “Already Not Yet," “Bunk Bread," and “Ginger Skin," but though his showmanship on electric bass often steals the show, his contemplative upright playing on “Chlkurin" reveals Germain’s true depth."
-Jon D'Auria "Bass Player Magazine" Dec 3, 2013

"Germain felt an intense urge to record his work, which resulted in the fine album, 'Before You Go'. Germain, who has worked with luminaries such as Yusef Lateef, penned all 10 of the albums cuts, which reflect his diverse interests....Germain shows his inventiveness as a composer on the waltz 'Lakefood'....as a soloist Germain generally plays high register pizzicato lines, and isn't afraid of taking on the burner 'Culebra'".
-Chris Robinson "Downbeat" 2010

"San Francisco based bassist/composer Aaron Germain's follow-up to his debut Before You Go (Self Produced, 2010) harnesses some of the Bay Area's finest musicians on another set of the leader's original compositions. The personnel, who includes French/Vietnamese guitarist Nguyen Le, is completely different to Germain's eclectic debut and it sounds like it too. Whereas Before You Go reflected Germain's command of bop, funk, blues and Latin, Chance is more stylistically homogenous. To be sure, Germain's diverse musical threads are present, but he weaves them together in a more seamless manner.
"Antes de Ir" begins with flautist Mary Fettig and Le stating the melody in unison. Le peels away with shimmering single note lines, buoyed by pianist Frank Martin, drummer Deszon X Claiborne and Germain's steady bass. Fettig picks up the reins, unfurling a mazy solo before reuniting with Le. A piano, bass and guitar unison riff momentarily injects a burst of pace, and apart from another brief flute excursion, this riff underpins a thunderous drum feature that continues until the composition's dramatic conclusion. It's a thrilling opener and has all the makings of a live tour de force.
Le is a significant presence throughout; his lyricism on the intro to the Bob James-esque "Ginger Skin" has a veena-like singing quality and the solo that follows couples tremendous fluidity with an overtly melodic sensibility. Germain's outing on electric bass is brief, and in general throughout the recording he orchestrates the music with intricate, grooving bass lines. His funk work on the lively "Bunk Bread" colors the tune as much as Le's biting jazz-rock solo. In firey mode, Le's ever-evolving solo evokes jazz-fusion guitarist Dean Brown. Martin on B-3 Organ and Germain respond with charged solos of their own.
There's more 1970s' funk/jazz-rock on "Already Not Yet"; Le's wacka wacka guitar is circa Starsky and Hutch while Martin flowing Fender Rhodes lines and squealing Mini Moog recall keyboardist Charlie Haden but this is essentially an intimate trio dialogue and it provides an absolute highlight of the set.
Chance serves up a pleasing blend of chops, grooves and strong melodies, with compositional nuance to boot. It serves further notice of Germain's growing confidence as both composer and leader and should appeal to jazz-fusion fans at both extremes of the spectrum."
-Ian Patterson, "All About Jazz" Nov 13 2013

"In twenty years as a bass player who’s equally proficient on both the standup and electric, Aaron Germain has played in bands performing virtually every kind of music from every corner of the world, including calypso, jazz, blues, reggae, Brazilian forro, Afro-Cuban music and fusion. Originally form the Northeast, Germain has become a fixture in the San Francisco bay area scene, having played for jazz luminaries on both coasts far too many to mention (we took notice of his bass contributions on a recent release by Bay Area guitarist David Haskell).
It’s only recently that Germain has begun to make his records as a leader; following up on his 2010 debut Before You Go, he now has added Chance to his nascent catalog.
Chance is widely diverse in styles, just as one should expect from someone of Germain’s background. But “diverse" alone doesn’t make it good, and the ace bassist goes plenty of distance to make it divergent yet lucid. A leader far more deft at leading than his thin discography would suggest, he gets the most out of his bandmates, fully allowing their own voices come through. He balances that out nicely with making his bass – whether a sturdy old standup or a state-of-the-art six string plugged-in model – the main proponent of every track.
One sure way to make a record diverse in a creative way is to enlist Vietnamese-French guitar marvel Nguyên Lê, whose mastery of Far East and West music forms is in his DNA. Listen to the microtones he slips into “Antes de Ir," an ostensibly rock fusion song but with a slight East Asian flavor accentuated by Mary Fettig’s flute, and culminating in a blazing drum explosion by Deszon X. Claiborne. Another novel way Indochina finds its way into First World fusion is on “Nhung Bac Thang," where a marimba-like Vietnamese instrument Dàn T’rung (played by Van-Anh Vo) syncs with Lê’s guitar on slippery lines, almost like Frank Zappa attempting a Brazilian tune. Frank Martin on piano and Lê later exchange solos that are stylish in their own ways as the mood gets heavier.
Germain, though, is an improviser every bit as splashy as his special guest guitarist. He leads “Bunk Bread," a bonafide rocker, with a kinky, muscular ostinato while Lê alternately unions with his electric bass and Martin’s B-3 organ; Germain is Stanley Clarke quick on his solo.
Speaking of Clarke, “Already Not Yet" at times acts like a leftover track from Romantic Warrior and in other aspects an outtake from Thrust, pulling together the best elements of Return To Forever and the Headhunters. This time, Germain’s sumptuous lines are something out of Jimmy Haslip’s playbook. Germain plays the rubbery main figure on “Ginger Skin" similar to a rhythm guitar, and goes up high and melodic on his bass solo.
Already proving he’s got great range, Germain reveals more when he reaches out for an acoustic bass. He interacts well with Martin’s piano on straight-jazz ballad “Chikurin" and “Ringo Oiwake" has this memorable, pretty strain delivered sensitively by Martin, again on piano, and Germain.
Applying his vast bass skills to original material that’s both challenging and bracing, Germain made a damned near flawless fusion album that conjures up what was so great about fusion back in the day, but injected with fresh ideas. He took some chances on Chance, and they paid off each time."
S. Victor Aaron "Something Else Reviews" Dec 4th 2013

Aaron Germain plays both electric and acoustic basses here, fronting a band with Nguyen Le/g, Frank Martin/key and Deszon X Claiborne/dr. Mary Fettig’s dreamy flute glides over “Antes de Ir" and some funky grooves are enhanced by Van-Anh Vo on “Nhung Bac Thang" while the rest of the time you get some bluesy piano work on Chikurin" and amazing fingerworking by the two axe men on “Ginger Skin."If you want funk with the B3, “Bunk Bread" will smoke you out of the room, and you’ll want to see Germain perform “Already Not Yet" in concert to see if he’s using mirrors or not. Hip little outing!
George W. Harris "Jazz Weekly 1/9/2014

"FAME readers will probably first have chanced across bassist Aaron German when I reviewed Beata Pater's Red (here) because he stood out there, and he stands out, of course, a good deal more here. Moreover, the guy chose top-notch VietNamese guitarist Nguyen Le, barely known here in the U.S. but very much favored over in Europe, as one of four extremely well integrated cohorts (with Frank Martin on keyboards and Deson X. Claiborne on drums) intimately creating a close-knit often Soft Machine-esque (Holdsworthian Bundles era) and Gong-olian (Holdsworthian Expresso era) vibe and sound.
Germain showed a strong, confident, creative presence with Pater and carries it forward in Chance, which presents a much more expansive palette for his work. I've made no secret that my all-time favorite bass player is Percy Jones (Brand X, yet another classic fusion unit) and Germain operates on that level but with a different vocabulary, funkier rather than jazzier. In the same manner, Le strongly cleaves to Holdsworth, but by way of Gary Boyle, Janne Schaeffer (old solo LPs), and, well, I hear old Harvey Mandel in his influences. Both gents get plenty of solos but never to excess, paving the way for Martin to well up…but not so much Claiborne, which is kind of a pity since the guy mans impressive traps, calling back to Phil Collins' work for the aforementioned Brand X.
Every cut here stands out, and the CD would be perfectly at home on the prog/jazz/fusion/avant-garde MoonJune label, not to mention a more progressive version of Blue Note or similarly enlightened unit (if EG were still hip, it'd fit there too, perhaps [the label never was all that much into fusion], but it halted its sincerities long ago). Nhung Bac Thang waxes Weather Reporty before slipping into Brubeck/Evans territory briefly, then Le enters in his flying saucer, and things get Frippian, buzzing and circumnavigatory, next Holdsworthian with speedy runs, and finally Carlton-ish, when that particular worthy sprints to burn (which, lord knows, he can do when he wants to), before mellowing out, going back into the main theme. The presence of Van-Anh Ho and her dan t'rung (bamboo xylophone) introduces a Tunnels tang to the song, which ends up winding down into the follower, Already Not Yet and Germain's peripatetic bass taking over.
Chops? Plenty of'em. Surreality? Well, of course! Change-ups and constant shifts of perspective? Naturally. But, in the end, just like the later Gong and all Soft Machine incarnations, everything forwards the song each time out, and Germain wrote them specifically to play to guitarist Le's many strengths, everyone else falling in right beside him."
-Mark. S. Tucker "Folk and Acoustic Music Exchange"

"While the quality of his playing is obvious, Germain never uses the tunes simply to demonstrate his talent—neither does he push his own instrument too far to the front of the mix. The result is a beautifully balanced recording that gives all the musicians space to play.......Before You Go demonstrates his ability as a writer and bandleader and clearly sets out his potential—it's a lovely album, imbued with talent, imagination and humanity."
-Bruce Lindsay "All About Jazz"

"Aaron's "before you go" is sophisticated and elegant. I recommend it to anyone who loves creative contemporary jazz played skillfully and thoughtfully."
-Michael Manring

"Drawing on his varied resume, he handles every disparate feel on these ten original and creative compositions with an experienced pro’s confidence and musicality that rewards repeated listens. The music flows along with such grace and understated ease it’s almost shocking when Germain displays his formidable agility in a solo, as he does acoustically on 'Culebra' and electrically on 'Bellabou Baiao' to great effect. It’s pretty hard to fathom that this is his debut – Before You Go has the vibe of a well-hailed third album by an established jazz artist."
-Bryan Beller

""Before You Go features Germain's technical prowess on both upright and electric bass with a stellar crew of sidemen. The disc's ten tracks-all composed by Germain-are high energy romps with exceptional soloing....Germain's compositions are lyrical, harmonically interesting and groove heavy.....Bolstered by Germain's jaw-dropping electric solo, the tune leaves one wanting more from such a dynamic configuration.....Before You Go is an exciting session deserving of wide recognition. The level of musicianship is first-rate and Germain's rousing compositional skills are a delight.""
- John Barron "All About Jazz"

Bassist Aaron Germain contributed all ten originals to Before You Go. His music can mostly be called post bop jazz, with unusual chord changes, a forward momentum, and room for plenty of dynamic solos. Eight of the ten numbers feature the brilliant tenor-saxophonist Sheldon Brown (whose influences range from Stan Getz to Michael Brecker), pianist Matt Clark, drummer Bryan Bowman and the virtuosic Germain in a quartet except for the swinging “Wrong Way Blues" which adds guitarist Matt Heulitt. On “Deep Breath," trombonist John Grove and vibraphonist Derek Smith are strong assets. “Bellabou Baiao" is a change of pace and a highlight since it features both Adrian Jost and Colin Hogan on accordions and Sheldon Brown switching to clarinet. The uptempo piece is worthy of Paquito D'Rivera. Aaron Germain has succeeded at creating an enjoyable set of modern jazz that is easily recommended and available from www.aarongermain.com.
-Scott Yanow

"San Francisco Bay Area doubler Aaron Germain shines on Before You Go, his debut as a leader. His rich and warm acoustic sound, courtesy a mic’d Romanian flatback, is the perfect sonic color for the album’s sophisticated contemporary jazz vibe, and he wields the electric with equal taste and panache, especially on the wickedly funky 'Deep Breath.'"
-John Hererra "Bass Player Magazine" 2010

"Aaron Germain is a cross genre bassist who keeps quite busy as one of the Bay Area’s most in demand bassists. Equally adept at both the electric and upright, his playing always sounds relaxed and confident. He never sounds as if he’s trying to do anything or get anything across to the listener aside from what the music asks of him."
-Damien Erskine "Bass Musician Magazine" 2010

"The Bay Area's Aaron Germain has carved out a solid career as one of the busiest bassists on the jazz scene. His debut CD, "Before You Go," shows off not only his sublime proficiency on stand-up and electric bass, but also his dazzling compositional skills."
-David Weigand "SF Chronicle" 2010

"Admiral Drive,' with brushes and a nice upper end pizzicato solo from Germain....Best of all was the standout track “Bellabou Baiao," a jittery piece with some terrific accordions, a great clarinet turn from Brown, and Germain’s most impressive work in his electric solo."
-Jason Bivens "Cadence Magazine" 2010