Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra: A Love Supreme (2004)
The suite opens with the familiar four bass notes that are followed by a flurry of flutes and then saxophones playing Coltrane's original fanfare. "Acknowledgement" serves as the come-to-order piece of the suite, but quickly migrates into densely colored passages fueled by the brass and reeds, with the rhythm section keeping order. Marsalis solos well, capturing the probing spirit of the composer. The opening bass line is echoed off the instruments as the opening coda is reached.
The second movement "Resolution" opens with a lead line that is now certainly part of the jazz collective unconscious. The reeds rule this section with spirited tenor and alto solos all around. Drummer Herlin Riley is very much in evidence as he steers the band through heavy Hard Bop seas. Eric Reed takes an impressionistic stroll, liberating block chords and arpeggios at will. This movement is beautifully bombastic, with a thick, fast momentum. "Pursuance" continues the trend of deft ensemble writing at high tempo with a rhythm section-soprano saxophone break that propels the piece to the final movement, "Psalm."
As with the Coltrane original, "Psalm" is a quiet tome of reflection initiated here with a bass solo and languid survey of the reeds and brass. It is thought provoking and angular. Marsalis has scored this sprawling suite very effectively. The spirit of Coltrane is united with that of Ellington in this superb recording.
Track Listing: Acknowledgement; Resolution; Pursuance; Psalm
Personnel: Walter Blanding Saxophone; Vincent Gardner Trombone; Victor Goines Saxophone; Andre Hayward Trombone; Carlos Henr
Record Label: Palmetto Records
Style: Big Band