JazzTimes (p.60) - "The title tune kicks things off in a hard-bop vein, with bouncy interplay from the horns on the head and deft soloing all around."
Personnel: Cedar Walton (piano); Vincent Herring (flute, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone); Willie Jones III (drums).
Audio Mixer: Rudy Van Gelder.
Liner Note Author: Fred Bouchard.
Recording information: Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, NJ (02/28/2011).
Photographer: Adriana Mateo.
Continuing in his tradition of stellar Highnote label albums, pianist Cedar Walton's 2011 release, The Bouncer, features the journeyman hard bopper leading a fine quintet of like-minded individuals. Once again featuring the talents of saxophonist Vincent Herring, who appeared on Walton's 2009 effort, Voices Deep Within, The Bouncer also showcases trombonist Steve Turre, as well as longtime associate bassist David Williams, drummer Willie Jones III, and percussionist Ray Mantilla. This is urbane, no-nonsense, straight-ahead acoustic jazz, the kind that Walton has based his career on since the '60s. To these ends, listeners get the jaunty, midtempo opener, as well as the lilting pretty waltz "Halo" and the Jones-inspired "Willie's Groove," which finds both Jones and Williams showing their improvisational stuff. Elsewhere, Walton and company tackle J.J. Johnson's "Lament"; rework Walton's "Underground Memoirs" from 1996's The Composer into a stylish, roiling Latin-tinged number; and keep the Latin vibe going on Trinidad native Williams' grooving "Got to Get to the Island." ~ Matt Collar