What a difference a day...err four years make.
I Don't Know This World Without Don Cherry
was the first Naxos Jazz recording I listened to some four years ago. Since that time the New York Jazz Collective has been pretty quiet as a group while several of its members have each been recording for the label. Quiet that is, until now. Everybody Wants to Go to Heaven
is the Collective's second release for Naxos Jazz. It is, in a phrase, a better behaved collection of originals than was the first recording. On I Don't Know...,
the boys are flexing their avant-guard muscles and strutting freedom everywhere. On Everybody...,
they have melded into a perfect cohesive unit with a sound that is almost big-band like or perhaps Miles Nonette-like.
"Elvin's Exit" is a lyrical illustration of perfect Post Bop with strong performances by Nock and the three horns. It is complex, yet manageable. "Everybody Wants to Go to Heaven" shows off Marty Ehrlich's bass clarinet and Ray Anderson's plunged trombone in an inebriated Ellington dream. For all of Wynton Marsalis' earnest efforts to capture the spirit of jazz in older forms, he is yet to provide a better effort that this. "Soliloquy" is a beautiful counterpoint, almost a wind trio. The music here is emotive and well played. A fitting follow up to the wonderful black sheep I Don't Know This World Without Don Cherry.
Personnel: Marty Ehrlich: Alto Saxophone, Clarinet, Bass Clarinet; Trumpet, Flugelhorn; Ray Anderson: Trombone; Mike Formaneck: Bass; Pheeroan ak Laff: Drums; Mike Nock: Piano.