Sunday, November 02, 2008

Tony Williams – Mosaic Select 24, Disc One (Mosaic, 2006)

Drummer Tony Williams had already had an epic career, featuring sideman stints with the likes of Jackie McLean, Miles Davis and Sam Rivers along with his own group Lifetime and the VSOP collective. In the 1980's, Williams was off the jazz scene living outside of San Francisco and studying composition. When the opportunity came to form a new band and record, he was more than ready. Williams formed a stable and sympathetic group with Wallace Roney on trumpet, Bill Pierce on tenor saxophone, Mulgrew Miller on piano, and a rotating cast of bassists. Disc one of this collection has the albums Foreign Intrigue featuring ringers Bobby Hutcherson on vibes and Ron Carter on bass) and Civilization. The music is advanced modern jazz, taking it's cue from the music Williams made as a member of the Davis Quintet in the mid-60's, but expanding on that and moving that ideal forward. All of the compositions are by Williams and they all have a very fresh and interesting feel to them. The first album has Tony adding some electronics to his drums that sound a little dated today, but the rest of the collection is envelope pushing acoustic jazz. Mosaic Select (

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