An amazing batch of tracks that will convince you that Walt Dickerson is one of the greatest jazz musicians ever to touch a set of vibes! The record was Dickerson's first for Prestige, and (like most of his albums on the label) it features a quartet lineup that includes the enigmatic Austin Crowe on piano, a very young Andrew Cyrille on drums, and little-known bassist Bob Lewis – whose pulsating work here really makes the album move! There's a strong sense of modernism to the music – those sharper tones that set Dickerson apart from most of his contemporaries on the vibes – but there's also a great sense of soul and warmth as well, more so than on some of Walt's other albums. Titles include the classic "Death & Taxes" – a massive modal groover – plus the beautiful "Evelyn", the haunting "Time", and other titles that include "Infinite You" and "Elizabeth". ~ Dusty Groove
RONNIE MATHEWS - DOIN' THE THANG!
One of the only early albums as a leader from pianist Ronnie Mathews – a player who recorded more often in later years, but who really sounds incredible in this rare session for Prestige! Although a lyrical player at heart, Mathews also has a very hard edge here – more of a soul jazz groove than you'd hear on his later records, and a great example of the sound he was picking up from some of his key 60s work as a sideman. The group is great overall – with Freddie Hubbard on trumpet and Charles Davis on baritone sax – both players who bring a Blue Note-like sense of imagination to their solos here. The rest of the group features Eddie Kahn on bass and Albert Heath on drums – and titles include the killers "The Thang", "Ichi Ban", and "The Orient" – plus "Let's Get Down", "1239A", and "Prelude To A Kiss". ~ Dusty Groove
FRANK FOSTER - FEARLESS FRANK FOSTER
An incredible album from tenor giant Frank Foster – one of his best records ever, with an impeccable soul jazz groove that's light years beyond his earlier work! The record has a bit of the feel of Frank's album with Richard Davis for Impulse, but takes off in a slightly different direction – tightly grooving, with a bit of a searching feel that points towards Foster's Coltrane-inspired later years. Frank's on tenor, and the rest of the group includes Virgil Jones on trumpet, Al Dailey on piano, Bob Cunningham on bass, and Alan Dawson on drums. The rhythmic component of the session is tremendous, and titles include "Disapproachment", "Baby Ann", "Janie Huk", and a great version of his "Raunchy Rita". ~ Dusty Groove