165

The Willie Williams Trio: Comet Ride

Dan McClenaghan By

Sign in to view read count
The Willie Williams Trio: Comet Ride The opening and title track of Willie Williams' Comet Ride really does blaze out of the speakers like visitor from the outer reaches of the solar system. Williams' searing tenor wails; trailing a fiery tail of sax, splashing cymbals and loping bass lines. And though the trio configuration—sax/bass/drums, without a chording instrument—suggests a free outing, the sound here maintains an accessible melodic structure, even when it's cranked-up into an approaching-the-sun velocity.

"Tenor Ballet" slows things down to a dirge level. The tune begins with Williams blowing long, eerie notes in front of Gary Wang's bowed bass for a beautifully pensive affair, with Wang and Williams conversing in deep and intimate tones.

Eight of the ten offerings here are from Williams' pen, with Ellington's "Caravan" closing the set, and "Freedom Suite"—not to be confused with Sonny Rollins' like-titled 1958 tune of the same name—serving as the centerpiece. Williams' "Freedom Suite" is medley of Eddie Harris' "Freedom Jazz Dance" and Jimmy Heath's "Gingerbread Boy" and "CTA," a deft combination of the tunes that proves a churning, hard-charging fifteen minutes of in-your-face jazz.

"Caravan," with the rarely-heard vocal bridge, is dominated by a smooth, layered flow of African rhythms supplied by drummer Rudy Walker, behind Williams impassioned blowing.

Williams, whose highest profile thus far comes from his work with drummer T.S Monk, blows hard, with big lungs like Sonny Rollins or Dexter Gordon. Comet Ride is a fine introduction to his saxophone artistry.


Track Listing: Comet Ride; Tenor Ballet; I'm Misunderstood; Three Generations; Leprechaun;s Dance; Changes of Heart; Freedom Suite: Freedom Jazz Dance, Gingerbread Boy, C.T.A, Freedom Jazz Dance Reprise; Mo' Grits; Philly Syndrome; Caravan.

Personnel: Willie Williams: tenor and soprano saxes; Gary Wang: bass; Rudy Walker: drums.

Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Miles High Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read Fellowship CD/LP/Track Review Fellowship
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 22, 2017
Read E.S.T. Symphony CD/LP/Track Review E.S.T. Symphony
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 22, 2017
Read June CD/LP/Track Review June
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 22, 2017
Read The Invariant CD/LP/Track Review The Invariant
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 22, 2017
Read Akua's Dance CD/LP/Track Review Akua's Dance
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Daylight Ghosts CD/LP/Track Review Daylight Ghosts
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 21, 2017
Read "Agartha" CD/LP/Track Review Agartha
by Roger Farbey
Published: August 14, 2016
Read "Flux" CD/LP/Track Review Flux
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: August 18, 2016
Read "Ever Up & Onward" CD/LP/Track Review Ever Up & Onward
by Mark Sullivan
Published: April 24, 2016
Read "One For Marian: Celebrating Marian McPartland" CD/LP/Track Review One For Marian: Celebrating Marian McPartland
by Karl Ackermann
Published: June 5, 2016
Read "Gold" CD/LP/Track Review Gold
by Jim Olin
Published: January 25, 2017
Read "Romance 76" CD/LP/Track Review Romance 76
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 11, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!