JazzTimes (2/97, p.120) - "...notable for the quality of its '50s mainstream music played by five relatively young masters....Chambers is magnificent; in the clarity of his walking lines, you can almost see the harmonic bones of a tune....Bass players and listeners who love superior bass playing should grab this one.
Personnel: Paul Chambers (bass); Clifford Jordan (tenor saxophone); Donald Byrd (trumpet); Tommy Flanagan (piano); Elvin Jones (drums).
Producer: Alfred Lion.
Recorded at the Van Gelder Studio, Hackensack, New Jersey on May 19, 1957.
Though he was primarily known as the young bass star with Miles Davis's famed '50s quintet, Paul Chambers was a well-rounded leader in his own right, as demonstrated on PAUL CHAMBERS QUINTET, his second release for Blue Note. Coming at the height of the bassist's tenure with Davis, this 1957 date is a solid statement of Chambers's magnificently sturdy approach to the bass and the unwavering, pristine tone that was the backbone of so many all-star sessions. One listen provides ample proof why he was one of the most sought-after bassists in jazz.
Accompanying Chambers are Blue Note regulars Donald Byrd, Clifford Jordan, Tommy Flanagan and Elvin Jones, all of who helped to define the post/hard bop aesthetic. Shining performances abound from all. Chambers lays down his determined lines with a few tasty solo spots, as on the swinging "Softly As In A Morning Sunrise." His famed arco sound is also present on cuts like Benny Golson's "Four Strings," presented here in two takes. Chambers' true strength, however, is in his rock-steady foundation that supports the other players with the utmost taste and musicality. Other highlights include the classic "What's New" and Chambers' own "Beauteous."
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