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Undercurrent Original recording remastered


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Audio CD, Original recording remastered, February 6, 2007
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Editorial Reviews


1. Undercurrent
2. Funk-Cosity
3. Lion's Den
4. The Pot's On
5. Groovin' The Blues
6. Ballade

Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 6, 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording remastered
  • Label: Blue Note Records
  • ASIN: B000MG2LQS
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #69,551 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

I will also say the remaster sounds great.
Transfigured Knight
It's great to have Kenny leading a session, as all of his sideman gigs for the label were great.
John Gilliam
One of the best jazz CD's I've had the pleasure of listening to.
rowlandmiller

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Michael Brad Richman HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on February 6, 2007
Format: Audio CD
Kenny Drew's "Undercurrent" is one of those classic Blue Note albums that most people have never heard of. Originally released on CD domestically in 1987, it was deleted in the early 90s and has only been seen since briefly in a limited edition reprint program or as an expensive import. Thankfully with this RVG Series reissue an almost forgotten classic has returned. Pianist Kenny Drew made invaluable contributions to many Blue Note classics -- Blue Train and Dexter Calling... to name two -- in addition to this fine album as a leader. "Undercurrent" is a magnificent hard bop session from December 11, 1960 featuring the talents of Freddie Hubbard, Hank Mobley, Sam Jones and Louis Hayes. The six compositions, all by Drew, are terrific medium and up-tempo swingers, with the exception of the lovely concluding piece, "Ballade." "Undercurrent" is as good as anything Blue Note recorded in 1960, and should really be picked up now that it is available at a reasonable price.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Caponsacchi HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 25, 2007
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
The only Blue Note recording under Kenny Drew's leadership and the last to be released under his name for a thirteen-year period, during which time the pianist would relocate to Europe, "Undercurrent" is a strong outing by the gifted pianist, composer and session leader. In the latter capacity, his job is made especially easy by a frontline of Hank Mobley and Freddie Hubbard, whose instant compatibility had been established just weeks earlier on Mobley's sterling "Roll Call" (Blue Note, 1960). Moreover, the rhythm team of bassist Sam Jones and drummer Louis Hayes had become one of the more efficient power plants in jazz as regular members of Cannonball Adderley's Quintet at the peak of its popularity.

"Undercurrent" has nothing as viscerally infectious as the Adderley's "Sack O' Woe" from the same year but is an admirable program of Drew originals, ranging from the modal, streaming title piece to the self-descriptive "Funk-Cosity" to "Lion's Den," a welcome change of mood and pace, to the beboppish "The Pot's On," an elliptical melody that yields to the reassuringly warm inventiveness at which Mobley has few if any peers.

If none of the tunes is strikingly original or memorable, the same might be said of Drew's otherwise superlative post-Powell piano work. Certainly among the highlights is the opening title tune. Drums and bass walk off eight bars at a flaming tempo, Drew adds a running baroque figure for the next eight, tenor and trumpet harmonize in thirds for the next sixteen then play in unison over a pedal tone for eight more, finally re- harmonizing in thirds for the last eight before Mobley's tenor is suddenly ejected into the jet stream for the first solo.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Michael Brad Richman HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on October 19, 2000
Format: Audio CD
Kenny Drew's "Undercurrent" is one of those classic Blue Note albums that most people have never heard of. Originally released on CD domestically in 1987, it was deleted in the early 90s had has rarely been seen since. This import version is all that remains of an almost forgotten classic. If you are intrigued by this title, I seriously suggest you fork over the big bucks to buy it now. Of course all things are possible, but I seriously doubt this will be released in the domestic RVG series. It just wouldn't sell enough copies because Drew isn't that recognizable. That's a shame because he has made irreplaceable contributions to many Blue Note classics -- "Blue Train" and "Dexter Calling" to name two -- in addition to this fine album as a leader. "Undercurrent" is a magnificent hard bop session from December 1960 featuring the talents of Freddie Hubbard, Hank Mobley, Sam Jones and Louis Hayes. The six compositions, all by Drew, are terrific medium and up-tempo swingers, with the exception of the lovely concluding piece, "Ballade." "Undercurrent" is as good as anything Blue Note recorded in 1960, and should really be picked up at any price.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Jack Baker on February 12, 2008
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This album is beyond excellent. Kenny Drew's fluid piano lines drive this hard bop masterpiece. It's a shame he was forced to migrate to Europe to find more appreciative audiences as this album is quite the aural treat. The pairing of Freddie Hubbard and Hank Mobley on trumpet and tenor sax respectively was an inspired choice, proven by the duo's easy rapport on this album, Mobley's Roll Call, and Hub's Goin' Up. Sam Jones on bass and Louis Hayes on drums swing it here, keeping Undercurrent on a steady, driving course. Mobs and Hub trade solos with ease and Kenny Drew's piano sparkles on each track. I don't know what this album sounded like before the remaster, but each instrument comes in crystal clear on the RVG reissue. Kenny Drew's compositions, while perhaps not as striking as Mobley's from Roll Call or Soul Station, still groove and provide a more than adequate springboard for these fine performers to stretch out. Mobley fans in particular will want this, as Hank is at the top of his game here.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Transfigured Knight on January 22, 2008
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Kenny Drew - "Undercurrent" released in 1960 on Blue Note Records is yet another great release that has been recently given the RVG (Rudy Van Gelder) treatment. This is such a smoking album, from start to finish. I will also say the remaster sounds great.

The lineup is also something to talk about. Who we have here are Freddie Hubbard on trumpet, Hank Mobley on tenor saxophone, Sam Jones on bass, Louis Hayes on drums, and of course, Kenny Drew on piano. What's also great is all the songs are originals and no standards, not that doing standards is bad, but here Drew shows some great composing ability that makes me wonder why he's not as well known or appreciated as say someone like Horace Silver or Red Garland. Kenny is also a great bebop piano player. The title track contains one of the most scorching Freddie Hubbard solos I've ever heard. Man, he's just too good!

If you're a fan of bebop jazz, then buy this album today!
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