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There is no introduction required for Louis Hayes, a legendary jazz drummer who for over 50 years has been putting his unique stamp on the world of jazz drumming, one post-bop polyrhythmic beat at a time.
As a leading architect of hard-bop and post-bop swing styles, Hayes lives in the present and continues to write new and exciting chapters in the pages of modern jazz drumming.
For the last 20+ years, Hayes has led/co-led some of the most uncompromisingly swinging groups in all of jazz. He has performed with Cannonball & Nat Adderley, John Coltrane, Kenny Burrell, Freddie Hubbard, Bobby Timmons, Hank Mobley, Booker Little, Tommy Flanagan, Cecil Taylor, McCoy Tyner, Ray Brown, Joe Henderson, Gary Bartz, Tony Williams, and Dexter Gordon.
"Hayes' masterful sense of swing and polyrhythmic attack is nothing short of awe-inspiring." -- Glenn Astarita, All About Jazz
"Hayes' swing rhythm on the cymbal was the spinal cord of the music, and he kept it going almost continuously, pushing the band, at fixed volume for almost a whole tune. And while he subtly changed the rhythm's accents here and there, his basic device was driving continuity, a bullet train that wouldn't stop." -- Ben Ratliff, New York Times
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Hayes' "Alani's World" is a tantalizing melody with a Latin bridge that gives us opportunity to enjoy Burton's vigorous and edgy tenor work. Appearing with Hayes has a surprising if not unanticipated affect upon Alves' piano playing. While we're accustomed to hearing him in a Brazilian influenced setting, as his roots suggest and wherein he excels, here Alves comes across with a distinctly more aggressive, bop informed sound that is a real kick. We get to savor some of Hayes' drum work before returning to the melody.
Two Horace Silver numbers are featured. The idyllic "Peace" in a bossa treatment is setting for Nelson's vibes. If under sung, Nelson is one of the best vibists around. Burton takes a turn with a lyrical solo and Alves once again captivates. DeBriano takes a wonderful bowed bass solo before Nelson's vibes return to take the number out. "The Preacher" is a gospel infused track as its creator intended. Burton gets right into the sermon with Nelson stepping up to the pulpit next with a message to get the congregation rocking. Alves has caught the spirit also and DeBriano bears witness to the power of the bass. This is "down home" jazz at its best!
Burton's "It's To You" comes smoking right out of the gate and here, again, Alves sounds as if he was brought up in Hard-Bop City rather than in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Burton's solo is aggressive and dives through the waves of Hayes' breakers with thrilling aplomb. There's more opportunity to dig DeBriano's ebullient and resonating bass work.
DeBriano's "Save Yourself" has Nelson and Burton stating the frenetic melody with scintillating solos from Alves, Nelson and Hayes. Burton's "Abellino" is more laid back yet rhythmically dynamic. Jobim's "Double Rainbow" is given a remarkable treatment with an "All Blues" vamp that sets up intriguing solos from a Tyneresque Alves, Burton evoking spirits of Trane, and Nelson, whose "typical" work is superb. The set's standard "Angel Eyes" is no ballad. Indeed, the number says they're glad Angel Eyes isn't there. Ya gotta love DeBriano on bass and, once more, Alves cooks like crazy and Burton makes one wonder why we're not hearing more from him. Leave it to Louis Hayes to set the clock on Now.