Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Intimate, Inventive, and Often Funky
Paul Howe | Maple Shade, NJ United States | 08/01/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I keep returning to this disc over and over a decade-plus later. The great composer/arranger/altoist left this world too soon, but this concert reminds us that his work was and is vital. Hemphill was one of the original World Saxophone Quartet and devised settings for big band and densely textured sextets toward the end of his life. Here his compositions are conveyed in an intimate setting where he gets to state the theme with his own horn and then show off his improvisational skill and a keening timbre as voicelike as his fellow Texan and alto player Ornette Coleman. Most impressive are the moments where cellist Abdul Wadud and he harmonize. Wadud, bowing in the upper registers in some spots, sounds very much like a sax and shadows Hemphill like Don Cherry on those classic Coleman tracks. But really, Hemphill was his own unique voice, compositionally and instrumentally. Because it has moments of great tenderness and sorrow counterpoised by an easy swinging smoky funk, you may want to play this late at night. Hear it at any rate."