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Tuesday, March 06, 2012

CD Review: Ambrose Akinmusire - When the Heart Emerges Glistening.(Blue Note).

Ambrose Akinmusire (tpt/celeste/voice); Walter Smith (ten); Gerald Clayton (pno); Harish Raghaven (bs); Justin Brown (dms). + Jason Moran (Rhodes - two tracks).

For those who can't wait to hear Akinmusire at the Gateshead International Jazz Festival (Sunday March 25 - 2pm) this CD will help bridge the gap.

The trumpet player is one of the most impressive and creative players of his instrument in contemporary jazz and is fast becoming a force to be reckoned with alongside musicians of any genre.

When the Heart Emerges Glistening is an example of his current standing as both a player and a composer. The disc simply exudes energy but without loss of feeling. Indeed such is the beauty of his tone that tenderness abounds with each note he plays and never more so than in the poignant Regret played as a duo with Clayton dishing out the sympathy chords to great effect. Trumpet is laid down and Akinmusire moves over to celeste for a brief cameo on Ayneh. What's New?, the only non-original tune, once again is a duo piece that, this time, brings to mind the spirit of the Ruby Braff/Ellis Larkins duets from the 1950's.  Clayton is very much like Larkins but Akinmusire leans more towards Terence Blanchard.

On tenor, Smith's opportunities are limited but when given his head he shines. On the boppish The Walls of Lechuguilla a light, almost Getzian, tone is revealed.

Bass and drums do the necessary to make this a delightful CD and the perfect appertiser to the Festival concert.
YouTube clip.
CD: Ambrose Akinmusire - When the Heart Emerges Glistening.(Blue Note).

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