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Bebop Spoken There

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As we all know there are no live gigs taking place in the immediate future. However, any links to jazz streaming that are deemed suitable - i.e. with a professional approach - will be considered for posting.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

CD Review: Leo Richardson Quartet - The Chase

Leo Richardson (tenor); Rick Simpson (piano); Mark Lewandowski (bass); Ed Richardson (drums) + Quintin Collins trumpet on 3 tracks) ; Alan Skidmore (tenor on 1 track).
(Review by Lance).
Still early days but, when I heard this album my immediate thought was that all bets are off regarding the CD of the Year. I double checked - had I put on a Dexter Gordon CD by mistake? No this wasn't the great Dex - none of those amusing quotes that gradually become annoying!
Nothing to annoy here. Just pleasure of the kind that Dexter gave in between the quotes. Leo is the most exciting tenor saxist that I've heard since Simon Spillett arrived on the scene. This is hard bop Blue Note as it was when I were a lad. Think Jazz Messengers and, if you were on Tyneside in the early '60s, the Emcee Five.
Then imagine them having absorbed some of the contemporary sounds along the way and you're getting close. Close, but no cigar. The Leo Richardson Quartet, augmented by Quintin Collins (3 tracks) and Alan Skidmore (1) owe direct allegiance to no one and indirect allegiance to everyone recorded by Rudy Van Gelder.
Wow! I just don't know where to begin.
Blues For Joe, Joe being Joe Henderson is a natural for Leo blowing, as he does, with the same intensity as the late master and driven on by Ed Richardson (kinfolk?).
Demon E. Collins brings some Lee Morgan to the table and the two horns ensure that 'Blakey Lives'.
The Curve. A blues with a bridge - maybe that's the curve that's been thrown. It doesn't phase them. Still in quintet form, it's another belter. Reminds me of Sidewinder.
The Chase, needless to say, has stunning tenor and trumpet solos but it's Rick and Ed who lay claim to the cigars with Mark providing the lighter fuel.
Elisha's Song is a sumptuous ballad. Romantic but not cloying. Whoever Elisha is she must surely be overwhelmed by the outpouring of love from the tenor saxophone as well as a shorter but equally sincere display of devotion from the piano.
Mambo has but a tenuous relationship to the South American dance and nobody shouts 'ooh'! This doesn't stop it swinging!
Silver Lining; a tribute to Horace Silver that continues to lay down the groove before Alan Skidmore enters the warzone and the frontline advance under Mr. Skid who sets it well and truly alight. But, you ain't heard nuttin' yet ...
I've kept the good news till last.
The Leo Richardson Quartet are booked to play Darlington's Opus 4 Club (Travellers Rest, 2 West Auckland Rd., Cockerton, Darlington DL3 9ER.) on Friday, December 1.
Album available October 6, launch October 11 at The Spice of Life (ah memories!) Soho.
Check it out here.
Lance.

1 comment :

Russell said...

Leo played tenor in Matt Roberts Sextet at the Darlington Jazz Festival 2016 and 2017. An amazing player who generated feverish excitement. Opus 4 Dec. 1, be there.

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