Acoustic Masters 1
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Former Chick Corea drummer Lenny White is producing a series of recordings by the "Acoustic Masters" of jazz, and this first installment teams the enigmatic Charles Lloyd, a saxophonist of great lyric gifts and dangerously solipsistic tendencies, with an all-star mainstream rhythm section. The results are marvelous, for they prove just how expressive and inventive Lloyd can be when placed inside a sturdy jazz structure. --Geoffrey Himes
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If the ECM albums evoke mid-60s John Coltrane, this one makes me think of Giant Steps and Coltrane Jazz. Lloyd brings 4 original compositions (three of which reappeared on later ECM albums), each of his partners contributes a single tune (Walton's "Clandestine" is my favorite), and there's a wonderful take on Thelonious Monk's "Green Chimneys". We get some intense blues blowing over a nice groove during "Blues for Bill".
I picked this one up to fill in a gap in my Lloyd collection, but I was very pleasantly surprised - I would put it up there as some of his best work since 1985.