Bill Evans


Zebra 44016-2

Bill Evans, soprano and tenor saxophones, keyboards, composer, arranger; Jim Beard, grand piano, Adam Rogers, guitars, Dean Brown, guitars; Lee Ritenour, guitars; Chuck Loeb, guitars; Henry Hey, add, keyboards; Chris Minh Doky, acoustic bass; Vinnie Colaiuta, drums; Manolo Badrena, percussion; Philip Hamilton, Lani Groves, vocals; Lew Soloff, trumpet; Conrad Herwig, trombone; Mark Egan, Bass; Wallace Roney, trumpet; Victor Bailey, Bass.

Bill Evans is a fine writer of music ­ it gets difficult to know what category to place Jazz in these days - perhaps smooth crossover Jazz might be a description for this CD. His style is rich in content and he shifts the tapestry and mood to create interest and diversity. For most of this CD Evans offers a 'gentlemanly' approach to saxophone playing; correct, well mannered, graceful and polite. He fronts most of the tracks with both soprano and tenor; often starting on soprano with thoughtful, clear playing, then answering himself on the tenor with equal clarity.

"Dixie Hop" marks an upbeat romp between Evans on soprano and the muted trumpet of Wallace Roney, backed by a lot of furious electronic effects. "Girl By The Sea" returns to a more reflective path ­ effective, unspoken vocals with interwoven instrumentation to intimate a haunting effect ­ Evans's saxophone is never far away though, lacing it all with his smooth articulation. His rhythm section is always right on, crisp and tight. "Back To The Wall" is another opportunity to let rip; the CD as a whole offers a pleasing, well-knit and cleverly articulated expression of Jazz playing.

Ferdinand Maylin

(Available at Jazz Now Direct)

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