One can imagine how a composer like Wim Mertens could appear on the Windham Hill label and – to some people's surprise – in the late '80s he appeared twice. Whisper Me is a compilation of tracks from his other Crepuscle releases, a mini-overview of his style, and a way of hearing some tracks from the then-impossible-to-find Maximizing the Audience. Mertens has more depth to him than other pianists on the label, and a darkness creeps in at the edges of these works.
Lone Hill Jazz presents a package of vintage cool West Coast jazz, bringing to light 16 excellent tracks that have all but fallen through the cracks over the years. On Monday, November 26, 1956 (which just happened to be the day that Tommy Dorsey died), tenor saxophonists Ted Brown and Warne Marsh brought their working quintet into a Los Angeles recording studio to make Brown's first album as a leader, with special guest alto saxophonist Art Pepper adding his own third dimension.
This CD brings the firsts LPs that the Candoli brothers recorded together. They are accompanied by an impeccable rhythm section. This is jazz which is characteristic of California, in the most joyful and spectacular side of it, interpreted by first-rate jazz musicians. Complete 1957 and 1958 Dot albums: "The Brothers Candoli" + "Bell, Book and Candoli".
Andrew Hill has been, in the gentlest of cases, an idiosyncratic player, composer, and bandleader. But often, reviews of his work have been quite strident and refer to him as an iconoclast. That's okay; some critics thought of Monk and Herbie Nichols that way, too. Time Lines has Hill back – for the third time in his long career – with Blue Note, the label that gave birth to his enduring classics like Black Fire and Judgment!. But Hill is still every bit the creative and technically gifted musician he was back in the day; perhaps more so. His band features seasoned veteran Charles Tolliver on trumpet, saxophonist Greg Tardy (who also triples on clarinet and bass clarinet, and beautifully, to say the least), and a rhythm section composed of bassist John Herbert and drummer Eric McPherson.
This is a recommended set of stimulating post-bop jazz. Andrew Hill's highly distinctive piano playing and unusual compositions hint at the past while following their own rules. The feeling of polyrhythms is present in several of Hill's seven compositions on this CD. The tightness of the bass-drum team (Lonnie Plaxico and Cecil Brooks) is quite impressive, as is the blend of Robin Eubanks' warm trombone and Greg Osby's alto.