Methodical design, rough-and-tumble play, and thoughtful exchange are often viewed as mutually exclusive concepts in jazz. Saxophonist Michaël Attias' Nerve Dance, however, obliterates that line of thinking and any potential obstacles that could separate those realms. This is a work that's cultured, contumacious, and conversational in nature. It's principled art unbound.
Reissue with the latest remastering. Features original cover artwork. Drummer Eddie Marshall never cut many albums as a leader, but we'll always love him for this one – a sublime San Francisco 70s session that features tremendous vibes from the great Bobby Hutcherson! But actually, the whole group's great – and also includes George Cables on piano, James Leary on bass, and Manny Boyd on tenor and soprano sax – who works alongside Hutcherson's vibes with some of the same soulful currents as Harold Land from earlier years! The tunes are well-paced – mostly by Marshall, with a slight undercurrent of spirituality – and a lyrical beauty that almost has Bobby in "Little B's Poem" territory at times.
A mix of early rehearsal tapes and a board tape from an early 1971 live show featuring a rare performance of "The Letter" makes this an official bootleg (band approved) worth adding to the collection after you've scored all the essentials…
Ronnie Mathews is a pianist we always love, no matter what the context – but here he's in this extra-great trio with bassist Stafford James, who almost seems to take center stage at times! James' deep, round tone is a perfect match for Mathews' approach to piano – and while Ronnie takes off on lyrical flights at times, Stafford has this grounding that balances things out beautifully – given some extra inspiration by the drums of Tony Reedus, who is the third key member of the trio. The title track alone – "Selena's Dance" – is worth the price of admission, and is this nine minute modal workout that shows everyone at top form. Some other numbers are mellower, but no less captivating – and tunes include "Stella By Starlight", "Blue Bossa", "Fee Fi Fo Fum", and "Body & Soul".