elvinjones

Wayne Shorter Speak No Evil

Wayne Shorter ‘Speak No Evil’

Wayne Shorter’s entire @bluenoterecords run is great, but if pressed I’d have to say this one is my favorite. Every time I play it I enjoy it a bit more—I don’t know that there’s a bigger or better endorsement of an album. It’s everything one could ask for: thrilling compositions that are hummable, memorable, engaging and full of surprises; a band that plays with gravitas, swing and telepathy; and a recording that captures the energy, power and nuance of the session. If this were the first jazz record you ever heard, you’d have picked a fantastic entry point. Veteran jazz listeners return to it again and again for good reason. The year was 1964 and Wayne brought along 2 of his Miles Davis second great quintet band mates Herbie Hancock (piano) and Ron Carter (bass) who by this point had both stage & studio experience enough with Wayne’s music to knock it out of the park. Add firebrand trumpeter Freddie Hubbard and drum powerhouse Elvin Jones and it’s no wonder that ‘Speak No Evil’ rises above great. This record should loom large in every jazz collection. This is Music Matters MMBST-84194, reissued in 2015 and sounding SPECTACULAR

Elvin Jones ‘Genesis’

The most overlooked, under-appreciated album in the Blue Note catalog that swings powerfully with a fearless sense of adventure. Elvin Jones ‘Genesis’ is a prime example of the old adage “Don’t judge a book by its cover”, and I’m not sure if my crappy photo helps or hurts! This is high-intensity, interstellar post-bop delivered with near-telepathic elegance by the piano-less quintet of Elvin Jones (drums) Frank Foster (tenor sax/alto flute/alto clarinet) Joe Farell (tenor/soprano sax) David Leibman (tenor/soprano sax) and Gene Perla (bass). This is a truly FANTASTIC, far-reaching, inventive (not quite out-there enough to be considered avant garde) and multi-faceted set that packs a visceral wallop while blowing your mind. Listen to this one when you’re ready to LISTEN. And you’ll want a strong cup o’ coffee as your co-pilot. I can hear why Music Matters chose this (comparatively) obscure record to release amongst its library of classics: sonically, this record is a *BEAST*—the Notorious RVG was at the top of his game. And what is there to say about Elvin Jones except that listening to this record, he sounds like the mightiest drummer to walk the earth. Thunderous. Standout track: “Three Card Molly”. Recorded at Rudy Van Gelder Studios, Englewood Cliffs, NJ 12 Feb 1971# joefarrell