336

Vincent Herring: Mr. Wizard

By

Sign in to view read count
Vincent Herring: Mr. Wizard With more than a dozen discs as a leader under his belt, Vincent Herring has developed a foolproof prescription for making great records: employ compatible sidemen, choose appealing compositions and approach the music with zealous devotion. On Mr. Wizard the brilliant saxophonist follows this formula faultlessly and the result is another rewarding listening experience. Herring has one of the most recognizable voices on alto saxophone in music today and is increasingly developing his own personality on soprano as well, as heard on three of the nine tunes here. Joined by young veterans of his recent recordings—trumpeter Jeremy Pelt, bassist Richie Goods, drummer E.J. Strickland and an impressive newcomer in pianist Danny Grissett—the leader navigates his quintet through a program mainly comprised of originals by the group’s members.

Beginning with a bebopping arrangement of “All God’s Children Got Rhythm,” featuring alternating alto and trumpet calls and responses in the melody and four bar exchanges with Strickland, the band shows where it’s coming from before Goods’ “Citizen Of Zamunda,” with its modernistic Native American sounding melody and rhythm featuring the leader’s soprano, demonstrates where it can go. Grissett’s “Hopscotch,” named for its stuttering introduction, is an engaging line that might easily be mistaken for a Horace Silver classic. Herring’s impassioned alto is particularly attractive on “You Leave Me Breathless.”

The quintet fires up McCoy Tyner’s tricky “Four By Five” with admirable aplomb, breathing new life into a classic from a still neglected period of the jazz repertory. A second Grissett original, “Encounters,” is an harmonic exploration of the territory originally mined by Miles Davis’ ‘60s quintet, with the entire group blending into an expressive impressionism propelled by Strickland’s provocative percussion discussions. A pair from the pen of Pelt, “Cassius” and “The Walk Home,” the former a swinging affair and the latter a pensive waltz, demonstrates the trumpeter’s strength as a composer. Herring wraps up the date with his own “Mr. Wizard,” a Jazz Messengerish anthem that gives everybody in the band the kind of workout you can expect to hear in one of their exciting live performances.

Visit HighNote on the web.


Track Listing: 1. All God's Chillun Got Rhythm (4:28) 2. Citizen of Zamunda (4:43) 3. Hopscotch (4:05) 4. You Leave Me Breathless (5:04) 5. Four by Five (5:04) 6. Encounters (7:43) 7. Cassius (5:21) 8. The Walk Home (7:19) 9. Mr. Wizard (5:40)

Personnel: Vincent Herring: Alto Sax, Soprano Sax; Danny Grissett: Piano; Richie Goods: Bass; Jeremy Pelt: Trumpet; E.J. Strickland: Drums.

Title: Mr. Wizard | Year Released: 2004


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read 90 Going On Amazing CD/LP/Track Review 90 Going On Amazing
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 21, 2017
Read Let There Be Life, Love and Laughter CD/LP/Track Review Let There Be Life, Love and Laughter
by Victor L. Schermer
Published: August 21, 2017
Read L.O.T.U.S. CD/LP/Track Review L.O.T.U.S.
by Mark Corroto
Published: August 21, 2017
Read Art in the Age of Automation CD/LP/Track Review Art in the Age of Automation
by Geno Thackara
Published: August 21, 2017
Read Screen Sounds CD/LP/Track Review Screen Sounds
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 20, 2017
Read Rediscovered Ellington CD/LP/Track Review Rediscovered Ellington
by Troy Dostert
Published: August 20, 2017
Read "Straight Ahead From Havana" CD/LP/Track Review Straight Ahead From Havana
by James Nadal
Published: June 6, 2017
Read "Algorithmic Society" CD/LP/Track Review Algorithmic Society
by Jim Trageser
Published: October 23, 2016
Read "Left" CD/LP/Track Review Left
by John Sharpe
Published: November 22, 2016
Read "Flying Machines" CD/LP/Track Review Flying Machines
by Roger Farbey
Published: August 29, 2016
Read "Spirit Forward" CD/LP/Track Review Spirit Forward
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: October 7, 2016
Read "Taking Direction" CD/LP/Track Review Taking Direction
by Marithe Van der Aa
Published: April 4, 2017

Sponsor: JANA PROJECT | LEARN MORE  

Support our sponsor

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.