Yoron Israel Connection: Yoron Israel (drums); Eric Alexander (saxophone); Bryan Carrott (vibraphone); Ed Cherry (guitar); Sean Conly (bass).
Additional personnel: Steve Turre (trombone, shells).
Recorded live at The Blue Note, New York, New York on March 9, 1998. Includes liner notes by Mark Griffith.
Recorded at one of New York City's best-known jazz clubs, Yoron Israel's second CD as a leader is an exciting live set featuring his working band of Bryan Carrott, Ed Cherry, and Sean Conly, with special guest Steve Turre joining the group on three selections and Eric Alexander subbing for Connection regular Lance Bryant. This is some of the best Alexander on record, as his playing is more cutting-edge and less bop-oriented than usual. Freddie Hubbard's "One of a Kind" is the group's tour-de-force, a multi-tempo composition with excellent solos by Turre and Alexander over Israel's masterful interplay. Other highlights include the relaxed groove of Ed Cherry's "Mogadishu," an uncredited but swinging arrangement of Thelonius Monk's "Bemsha Swing," a funky rendition of Jimmy Heath's "Mellowdrama," and Mulgrew Miller's energetic "The Eleventh Hour." A fine musical statement by one of jazz's most underrated drunmers. ~ Greg Turner