10 Mahler 10Mahler – Symphony No.10
Lapland Chamber Orchestra; John Storgårds
BIS BIS-2376 SACD (bis.se)

When Gustav Mahler died in 1911 at the age of 50 he left behind sketches for his tenth and final symphony. Of the five movements, we have Mahler’s full scores of the first and third movements with the remainder in an abbreviated short score format. These preliminary sketches, skeletal though they may be, define the entire melodic structure of the work. In this sense Mahler’s final testament is less unfinished than unrealized. It was not until the mid-1920s that efforts were made to bring the symphony to light with the publication of Ernst Krenek’s edition of the first and third movements and the release of a facsimile edition of the sketches. Numerous subsequent efforts have been made to refine the other three movements; the most successful of these has proved to be the “performing version” by Deryck Cooke first heard in 1960.

Over 30 recordings of the complete work in various versions have been issued since. This new chamber orchestra arrangement, by the Maltese conductor and musicologist Michelle Castelletti, is an exceptional accomplishment, quite brilliantly executed by the phenomenal John Storgårds and his Lapland Chamber Orchestra. I was initially quite skeptical that an orchestra of a mere 24 players (single woodwinds, a lone trumpet and horn, 14 strings, piano, harmonium, harp and percussion) would prove adequate to convey the impact of the 100 musicians Mahler normally employed. I was mistaken; even in these reduced circumstances the pathos of Mahler’s message still shines through in Storgårds sublime interpretation. This ranks as one of the most exciting and accomplished performances I have heard in my lifetime of terminal Mahleria.

11 Buzz BrassInspirations
Buzz Brass
Analekta AN 2 8776 (analekta.com/en)

Canada’s renowned Buzz Brass ensemble presents “brand new transcriptions of major works” from celebrated composers Antonín Dvořák, Maurice Ravel and Erik Satie. Victor Ewald’s Quintet No.3 in D-flat Major (Op.7) is the only work on this disc originally intended for brass.

Inspirations is an attractive recital with each of four gems in this repertoire being polished to a glittering sparkle. This is the work of two Québécois arrangers, François Vallières and Hugo Bégin who – judging by these inspired re-imaginings – certainly ought to be better known than they might be in Québec. The imaginative arrangement of Satie’s Gymnopédies ought to be proof enough. But if there needs to be further evidence of highly original musical transcriptions, there is also proof in the transformations of Ravel’s String Quartet in F Major (Op.35) and Dvořák’s String Quartet No.12 in F Major “American” (B.179). All are highly creative re-arrangements; wholly satisfying both structurally and expressively.

The Buzz Brass parley with the familiarity of old friends, yet their playing always retains the sense of gracious etiquette associated with noble academies for which this music was no doubt originally intended. Nothing is forced, exaggerated or overly mannered; tempi, ensemble and balance all seem effortlessly and intuitively right. The brass sound is lucid. These are, in sum, sincere and poised accounts, a fitting tribute to the faultless character of the original music of the composers.

01 New Jewish Music 2New Jewish Music Vol.2
Lara St. John; Sharon Azrieli; Couloir; Orchestre classique de Montreal; Boris Brott
Analekta AN 2 9262 (analekta.com)

This Analekta release of new orchestral works features the powerful musical abilities of the Orchestre Classique de Montréal under the internationally respected Canadian conductor Boris Brott. The disc centres around the Azrieli Foundation’s prizes for newly created works. Two prizes are awarded: The Azrieli Prize for Jewish Music – recognizing an existing work – and the Azrieli commission for Jewish music, an initiative created to encourage composers to critically engage with the question of “What is Jewish music?”

The first piece on the disc – the premiere performance of En el escuro es todo uno (In the Darkness All is One) by Canadian composer Kelly-Marie Murphy – is a tour de force of orchestral imagination. Murphy is clearly a confident orchestral writer and it shows in this piece. The work is scored for solo harp, cello and orchestra, and Murphy expertly delivers a fine example of the concertante idiom. This piece represents the results of the 2018 Azrieli Commission Prize and features B.C. duo Couloir, Heidi Krutzen (harp) and Ariel Barnes (cello), as soloists.

The 2018 Azrieli Prize for Jewish Music was awarded to the Israeli-born composer Avner Dorman for Nigunim – a violin concerto in four movements. Dorman writes highly idiomatic and playful passages for the soloist answered by equally light dances and trifles in the orchestra. This work makes for an excellent showpiece for the soloist, Lara St. John in this instance, while not being overly dramatic in the virtuosic sense.

Last on the disc is a new recording of Seven Tableaux from the Song of Songs by the late Canadian composer Srul Irving Glick. This music is lyrical and melancholy. Glick had a particular affinity for creating an emotional painting with his music without being overtly sentimental. Soprano soloist Sharon Azrieli performs this work with stunning colour and musical prowess.

02 James OCallahanJames O’Callaghan – Alone and Unalone
Ensemble Paramirabo
Ravello Records rr8020 (ravellorecords.com)

While listening to music one might consider, “I like these sounds” or “I like how this music moves forward.” While neither of these thoughts can provide an adequate basis for the judgement of artistic value, the latter says more than the former and also comes closer to being such a basis. One might say that “I like how it goes” captures a feature fundamental to music’s being good at a level less abstract than that of the experience of it being intrinsically rewarding.

When listening to the highly personal, compelling and frankly compulsory environments created by Canadian composer James O’Callaghan, one invariably approves of how it sounds and how it goes. In this release of works written especially for the Montreal-based Ensemble Paramirabo, the “I like how it goes” nature of the music connects the listener with the absolutely crucial notion of following music with anticipation – but also with harmonious and welcomed disassociation. With titles such as subject/object and Alone and unalone, there is a certain amount of obfuscation – delivered on an abstract level – but also literally, as admitted by the composer himself in an effort to provide a conceptual motivation of the “transference of concrete sound into abstraction, returned to the conditions from which they were derived.” While the musico-philosophical liminality of this music would make for interesting discussion, one can’t help but simply appreciate the raw and unfettered imagination produced by O’Callaghan’s manner of putting pen to page, and with the electronic aspects of the works, world to speaker.

The ensemble brings a high amount of musical excellence and an intimate bravura to this recording – a testament to their ongoing commitment to O’Callaghan’s music. Bravo to all.

03 Duo KalystaOrigins
Duo Kalysta
Leaf Music LM226 (duokalysta.com)

Flutist Lara Deutsch and harpist Emily Belvedere first met when collaborating in 2012 at McGill University. Since then Duo Kalysta has been playing chamber music to artistic acclaim, as demonstrated by this clear-sounding release recorded in Montreal.

TSO harpist Judy Loman’s colourful flute and harp arrangement of Claude Debussy’s Prelude à l’après-midi d’un faune opens the CD. The flute beginning catches the listener’s attention, with sparkling arpeggiated harp, dreamy flute and astounding tight ensemble playing in the more rubato sections.

Two Canadian compositions follow. R. Murray Schafer’s three-movement Trio for Flute, Viola and Harp (2011) has violist Marina Thibeault joining them. Freely, flowing has melodic lines with changing volumes, tempi and note lengths creating the soundscape. The sonic space of Slowly, calmly is highlighted by long atmospheric viola notes doubled by the flute underneath. Dance-like Rhythmic is like listening to a musical story with viola plucks, high-pitched flute, harp flourishes and abrupt stops in a race to the end.

Composer Jocelyn Morlock notes that her two-movement Vespertine (2005) refers to night-blossoming plants and nocturnal animals. Twilight presents musically darker colours with longer phrases and more independent parts. Verdigris is performed with sweetly delicate harp staccato lines and contemplative flute notes, bird-like trills and higher notes.

Violinist Alexander Read, violist Thibeault and cellist Carmen Bruno add an orchestral feel to André Jolivet’s Chant de Linos (1944), an intense, dramatic composition highlighted by impressive flute playing.

Here’s to a promising musical future!

04 Kremer VoiceFinding Your Own Voice
Gidon Kremer
Accentus Music ACC20414 (naxosdirect.com)

In the September WholeNote, Terry Robbins reviewed the CD of Gidon Kremer’s recording of the late Polish composer Mieczyslaw Weinberg’s 24 Preludes to a Lost Time, Op. 100. Written for solo cello, Kremer plays his own transcription for solo violin. Robbins concluded that “His superb performance befits such a towering achievement, one which is a monumental addition to the solo violin repertoire.”

Accentus Music has since issued a DVD of that unique performance and we now see Kremer spotlit alone on the dark stage in the Gogol Centre in Moscow. Behind him in the darkness is a theatre-size, rear-projection screen on which, at appropriate times, are seen original images from the 1960s taken by photographer Antanas Sutkus. Each selected photograph illuminates the mood of the particular prelude being played, often stark, sometimes sad, sometimes amusing but so appropriate. Genius.

The documentary, Finding Your own Voice, is a film by Paul Smaczny that is a totally engrossing biography of Kremer and his world of music. It revolves about music that embraces Kremer’s life and we hear and see him with musicians including conductors and composers whose music touches him. Listen in as he discusses passages in rehearsals with the likes of Arvo Pärt and others. There are so many thought-provoking observations and philosophical reflections that one may be immediately prompted to watch it again in case you missed something. Whether or not you are a Kremer fan, you will get a lot out of this unusual and illuminating film.

05 Kurtag ScenesGyörgy Kurtág – Scenes
Viktoriia Vetrenko; David Grimal; Luigi Gaggero; Niek de Groot
Audite 97.762 (naxosdirect.com)

The nonagenarian Hungarian composer György Kurtág ranks among the leading living modernist music masters. His precisely crafted, intense, compressed, emotion-filled and dramatic style evokes a kind of sonic haiku, demanding the utmost from instrumentalists and singers alike.

This album presents six previously unreleased songs and instrumentals by Kurtág, with lyrics from literary works in Hungarian, Russian and German. Scenes from a Novel, Op.19 (1984) for example, consisting of 15 extremely varied short movements, is a prime example of Kurtág’s oeuvre. With melancholic, introspective texts by the Russian writer Rimma Dalos, the songs feature virtuoso soprano Viktoriia Vitrenko, who nails the shifting emotional-tonal terrain. She is impressively supported by violinist David Grimal, bassist Niek de Groot and cimbalomist Luigi Gaggero. Given its masterful composition, imbued gravitas, dramatic and emotional range and the near-20-minute length of this series of epigrams, the work takes on an operatic magnitude. And I found the rest of the songs here just as compelling.

The Hungarian cimbalom is a stylistic and national marker on much of the album, a sonic through-line in addition to the voice, although novice listeners should not expect even a tinge of Magyar folkloric colour. The cimbalomist Gaggero makes a solo appearance at the end of the album on Kurtág’s Hommage à Berényi Ferenc 70. His soft, wistfully sensitive rendition feels like a relaxed puff of gently perfumed smoke after the intense multicourse sonic dinner we had just experienced.

06 McCormick PercussionSoli for Tuba, Zheng, Horn, with Percussion
McCormick Percussion Group; Robert McCormick
Ravello Records rr8014 (ravellorecords.com)

The award-winning Florida-based McCormick Percussion Group specializes in interpreting non-mainstream percussion scores, often collaborating with guest non-percussionists. Its latest album presents five works by four American composers featuring one or more non-percussion soloist backed by the forces of the MPG, the size of a modest orchestra.

Album opener Loam by Kentucky composer Tyler Kline is a substantial four-movement concerto for tuba and percussion ensemble. Metaphorically, it seeks to convey the notion of natural cycles: the earth being tilled, life being born from the soil and ultimately returning to it after death. Prize-winning Taiwanese-American composer Chihchun Chi-sun Lee’s attractive Double Concerto for Tuba, Zheng and Percussion Orchestra is perhaps the first work scored for these instruments. She effectively juxtaposes the expressive upper register of the plucked strings of the zheng with the lower wind tones and multiphonics of the tuba, the texture filled in by the spatially arrayed percussion sounds. While the first movement blends colour, timbre and gesture among these disparate instruments, movement II focuses on tuba and zheng solos. The final movement balances all three forces in an energetic finale.

Lee’s other score on the album, Zusammenflusses (Confluences), is a duet for zheng and percussion, distinguishing it from the concerto forms of the other works on the album. Using a non-tonal language, Lee deftly counterposes the differences and similarities between the plucked and bowed zheng, vibraphone and various cymbals.

This album, a journey into unexpected combinations of sounds and cultures, is one well worth taking in.

07 Bellido Symphonic CanvasJimmy López Bellido – Symphonic Canvas
Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra; Miguel Harth-Bedoya
MSR Classics MS 1737 (msrcd.com)

Two novels, written nearly 400 years apart, inspired these two works, both from 2016, by Jimmy López Bellido (b.1978), composer-in-residence of the Houston Symphony.

Miguel de Cervantes’s final literary creation described two Scandinavian nobles’ adventurous pilgrimage to Rome. López Bellido says his Symphony No.1 – The Travails of Persiles and Sigismunda wasn’t intended to portray the novel’s events, but “to convey [its] spirit, greatness and humor.” Nevertheless, the four-movement, 45-minute symphony contains many dramatic “events” – eerie forebodings leading to garishly scored, violent climaxes. The Latino-tinted third movement provides the only “humor” – jazzy and snarky.

In December 1996, Túpac Amaru terrorists took hundreds of people hostage after storming a reception at the Japanese ambassador’s residence in Lima, Peru, López Bellido’s native city. His 2015 opera, Bel Canto, was based on Ann Patchett’s 2001 novel of the same name, itself based on the four-month-long hostage crisis. The three-movement, 30-minute Bel Canto – A Symphonic Canvas, encapsulates the opera. Perú, Real and Unreal begins with the Overture and ends with the climax of Act I, the shooting of diva Roxane Coss’ accompanist. La Garúa depicts an enshrouding fog and several hostages’ plaintive emotional outpourings. The End of Utopia derives from the final scene, the attack that frees the hostages and Coss’ anguished aria, here “sung” by a trumpet, over the desolation.

Both works show López Bellido has clearly mastered the knack of building suspense and effectively ending it with climaxes of exceptional sonic power and brilliance.

08 Feldman box front coverMorton Feldman Piano
Philip Thomas
Another Timbre at144x5 (anothertimbre.com)

2019 marks the 20th anniversary of John Tilbury’s signal All Piano, a four-CD set approaching almost all of Morton Feldman’s piano music. Here the younger Philip Thomas presents a five-CD, six-hour set of even more of these works. There’s a direct lineage: in 2014, the two pianists recorded Two Pianos and other pieces, 1953-1969 (also on Another Timbre), covering Feldman’s works for multiple pianos and some for pianos with other instruments.

Thomas explores the breadth of Feldman’s solo piano music, omitting only a few student pieces from the 1940s, while resurrecting others, like an archival minute-long Untitled piano piece, dated 1947, for a glimpse of Feldman’s nascent vision. There are also transcriptions of two pieces with lost scores, including the piano part in the soundtrack for the film Sculpture by Lipton.

Thomas brings a reflective depth to the work, emphasizing the composer’s preoccupation with sonic detail. Although Feldman didn’t alter the piano’s physical character like his colleague John Cage, he explored its sonic character and notation with a unique depth, including silent fingerings to create harmonic resonance, varied approaches to grace notes and allowing sounded notes to decay in full, the sounds isolated and appreciated individually.

While sometimes developing a kind of dislocation – even writing two-hand parts as if they were synchronous, then instructing that they be played separately – Feldman put a new emphasis on attack, duration and decay. There’s great detail in Thomas’ 52-page liner essay, including his description of a year-long recording process with producer Simon Reynell that emphasizes the music’s sound from the performer’s perspective and suggests the albeit quiet music be played loud enough for all its detail to emerge.  

Landmarks and masterworks will draw attention first. Disc One creates an immediate overview, gathering significant pieces that run throughout Feldman’s career and last between 22 and 27 minutes, from 1959’s diverse Last Pieces, to 1977’s Piano with its greater formal concerns and his final Palais de Mari (1986), with its geometric construction and enduring resolution. Still more commanding are the late and large-scale Triadic Memories and For Bunita Marcus, vast explorations of form and scale that can suggest compound bells.

Feldman’s relative miniatures, however, are just as significant: the collaborative nature of his music, including unspecified durations and sequences, clearly inspires Thomas. It’s most notable in Intermission 6 (1953), with the performer determining order and repeats. Thomas provides three versions of the piece, one in the published score, two of his own design, one of those with repetitions, the three running from less than five to over 11 minutes.

Feldman produced one of the most resonant and intimate bodies of 20th-century piano music, conditioning and opening time in the process. Philip Thomas is an ideal collaborator.

09 New York RisingNew York Rising – American Music for Saxophone Quartet
New Hudson Saxophone Quartet
Independent (store.cdbaby.com)

The New Hudson Saxophone Quartet is led by Paul Cohen (soprano), who also arranges two of the selections on this CD. Avi Goldrosen (alto), David Demsey (tenor) and Tim Ruedeman (baritone) complete the group which plays cleanly and expressively, delivering nuanced performances of several conceptually related works.

The opening New York Rising (2003) was composed by Joseph Trapanese who evokes his sense of “curiosity and determination” from the time he moved to New York as a freshman music student and watched the sun rise from his small practice room. The piece is descriptive as it moves us through the day in this fabled city, from the Prelude, to the Chorale and then ending with the Fugue which represents the city at its busiest. The album’s centrepiece, the five-movement Diners (Robert Sirota, 2009), written for this quartet, was inspired by three of the composer’s favourite diners and his travels to them through the city and suburbs. A highlight is the final Taking the N train to Dinner at the Neptune, Astoria, Queens where we hear the quartet emulating the rattling of the elevated subway as a counterpoint to the dining experience.

The three-movement Saxophone Quartet No.1 by David Noon (2001), two works by Aaron Copland (arranged by Cohen) and Lisbon by Percy Grainger, round out the album. The quartet sound is excellent on all tracks and the range of compositions create diverse and engaging portraits of New York.

Listen to 'New York Rising: American Music for Saxophone Quartet' Now in the Listening Room

01 Chelsea McBrideAftermath
Chelsea McBride’s Socialist Night School
Independent (crymmusic.com)

Chelsea McBride’s Socialist Night School is a modern jazz orchestra that’s been producing contemporary music only since about 2014 yet this is the group’s third recording and second full-length album. This is no mean feat for a small group, but for a 19-piece big band it’s extremely impressive. Even more impressive is the scope of this album. With ten tracks mostly clocking in at seven to eight minutes each, it tackles all kinds of ideas both musically and lyrically with all the songs written, arranged and conducted by McBride.

The main theme of Aftermath is conflict and, as such, it’s not surprising that the overall feel of the music is driving and angular and that there are sometimes less-than-pretty sounds used to convey the ideas. The opening track, Revolution Blues, was inspired by the 2016 U.S. presidential election. (The one and only good thing I can say about Trump is he’s inadvertently inspired some great art.) House on Fire with its carnival vibe, delves into the impact corporate greed has on our world. There are some melancholy beauties here too, like Say You Love Me and The Void Becomes You.

McBride formed the band shortly after graduating from Humber College and the majority of the players are her 20-something contemporaries along with a few veterans like trombonist William Carn and saxophonist Colleen Allen, the latter of whom is featured on the Me Too ode, Porcelain along with Naomi Higgins. Trumpeter Tom Upjohn takes an epic turn on Ballad of the Arboghast. The musicianship throughout the recording is superb but singer Alex Samaras deserves special mention. He executes the challenging melodies with skill and adds much musicality and warmth with his beautiful voice.

Aftermath is a big, ambitious project well worth the attention of fans of modern big band music.

02 Diane RoblinLife Force
Diane Roblin
Independent (dianeroblin.com)

Following her successful 2014 comeback, noted composer and multi-keyboardist Diane Roblin has once again created an eclectic, deeply personal and musically meaningful project that unabashedly celebrates life, and the inevitable, invigorating roller-coaster ride that is part of a well-lived human experience. Roblin’s gifted collaborators here include CD producer and acoustic/electric bassist, George Koller; trumpet/EVI player Bruce Cassidy (who also contributes the exceptional horn arrangements); Kevin Turcotte on trumpet and flugelhorn, Jeff LaRochelle on tenor sax and bass clarinet and Ben Riley on drums.

Back on Track is the sassy opener, with Roblin laying it down on Fender Rhodes, deftly establishing the spine of the funk. Cassidy’s EVI solo, followed by Turcotte’s trumpet solo, propel things to a higher vibrational level, while Koller’s gymnastic, supportive bass work and Riley’s drums are the soulful glue that gently hold the expandable structure of the tune together. Another standout is Snowy Day (which reappears at the end of the CD). LaRochelle’s bass clarinet is simply stunning and perfectly complements the introspective mood of the tune, as well as Roblin’s skilled and intuitive acoustic piano work. All the while, Cassidy’s horn arrangement weaves a silken web of harmonically complex ideas.

Another fine track is Suspend Yourself, where Roblin reminds us of her skill, not only as a pianist, but as a new music composer. The ensemble breaks into the piano intro with considerable pumpitude, morphing into a straight-ahead bop motif, spurred on by Cassidy’s EVI. Of special note is the tender Ballad in 3-4, which displays the gentle, contemplative aspects of Roblin’s musicality, gorgeously framed by Koller’s bass solo and the Kenny Wheeler-ish horn parts.

03 Fulton and WeedsDream a Little…
Champian Fulton; Cory Weeds
Cellar Live CLO22519 (cellarlive.com)

It is probably pure happenstance, but a song such as Dream a Little Dream of Me seems to have been written for just such an intimate encounter as between pianist and vocalist, Champian Fulton, and saxophonist and impresario, Cory Weeds. What is no accident, however, is the fact that these two musicians seem to automatically fall in with each other, melodically, harmonically and rhythmically, so that axiomatic sparks begin to fly.

Weeds plays with quiet brilliance throughout Dream a Little… His uniquely sophisticated and sonorous style weaves in and out of the vibrant and affectionate expressivity of Fulton’s pianism, her voice often becoming the crowning glory of the songs here. Both musicians seem to connect in a rarefied realm, but they then descend to earth where they each inhabit a palette of sumptuous colour. Then, like a couple in love, playfully oblivious of the attention they have attracted, they hold each other’s music in a tight embrace.

There is too much proverbial gold on this album, but I am going to risk suggesting that the biggest ear-opener is Darn that Dream. This performance burns in the quietude of the bluest part of a musical flame; its languid, seemingly interminable narrative made to simmer forever in a rhythmic and sonic intensity where Weeds contributes lyrical prowess, while Fulton offers her brilliant vocalastics, which sustain the music’s emotional mood while bringing the text’s poetic imagery to life.

04 Sam KirkmayerHigh and Low
Sam Kirmayer; Ben Paterson; Dave Laing
Cellar Live CLO 20118 (cellarlive.com)

During an era in which even the most straight-ahead jazz guitarist tends to have a sprawling array of pedals on stage, Sam Kirmayer is something of an anomaly. A traditionalist who tends to eschew effects in favour of the unmediated connection between instrument and amplifier, Kirmayer has found a voice for himself in the bluesy, hard bop style of guitarists like Grant Green, Wes Montgomery and Peter Bernstein. His newest album, High and Low, is his first to be released on Vancouver’s Cellar Live Records; an apposite fit, for a label that has become Canada’s leading outlet for hard bop. High and Low is an organ trio album, a rarity in and of itself in Canada. Drummer Dave Laing – who also played on Kirmayer’s debut album – is a faculty member in McGill’s jazz program, and is a stalwart of the Montreal scene. New York organist Ben Paterson, whose résumé includes work with Bobby Broom, Johnny O’Neal, and Peter Bernstein, rounds out the trio.

High and Low delivers amply on the premise that it sets out for itself: it is a swinging hard-hitting album, with crisp, tasteful playing from all involved. It is also, from the opening notes of the title track, a sonically beautiful experience, with all of the richness and depth that one hopes for in an organ trio recording. Kirmayer is in his element throughout High and Low, and Laing and Paterson make for a strong rhythmic team.

05 Pat Labarbera Kirk MacDonaldTrane of Thought (Live at The Rex)
Pat LaBarbera/Kirk MacDonald Quintet
Cellar Live CLO71819 (cellarlive.com)

When two extraordinary jazz saxophonists team up for a John Coltrane tribute, you know it’s going to be explosive. And that’s exactly what this live recording, featuring both Pat LaBarbera and Kirk MacDonald along with their band, is. The record is a well-picked and thought-out selection of songs from the two Coltrane tribute shows that the duo performed at our city’s beloved jazz joint, The Rex, in 2018. Ranging from the legendary saxophonist’s earlier works to some of his most lasting and obscure ones, LaBarbera and MacDonald have achieved, in their own words, “a thoughtful balance.” The album stems from a love for Coltrane that the duo has, LaBarbera seeing him live when he was studying at the Berklee School of Music and MacDonald discovering Coltrane on record at an early age.

The songs on the record, although from separate live shows, have been picked in such a way that it tells a thorough story; starting off sultry and well-paced with On a Misty Night and Village Blues, building up to a wonderful and fevered climax with Impressions and coming to a scintillating end with Acknowledgment/Resolution. Coltrane’s works can be appreciated very well here, especially with the excellent backing musicians – Brian Dickinson on piano, Neil Swainson on bass and Joe LaBarbera on drums. Fan of Coltrane or not, this album should definitely be a part of any jazz aficionado’s collection.

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