Zoot's quartet renders the oldies
James A. Vedda | Alexandria, VA USA | 10/21/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Seven of the eight tunes in this collection qualified as old standards by the time Zoot made this recording in 1960. (The last tune, "I've Heard That Blues Before," is a straight-ahead blues with no lead line.) The quartet swings vigorously, and "Doggin' Around" and "Avalon" really jump. The digital remastering helps the clarity of the sound (I have the LP release for comparison), but of course miking techniques were different in those days, especially for drums, so the depth of the sound can never compare to a modern recording. To hear the difference in something directly comparable, check out Zoot's 1981 quartet album "I Wish I Were Twins" (see my review).
This CD release also includes six bonus tracks, but they're all alternate takes. I'm sure some folks will disagree with me, but I've never been thrilled with alternate takes because there's usually a reason why they're not chosen as the primary takes. I'm content to hear the ones chosen by the artists and producers. Bonus tracks should be additional tunes that didn't make it onto the original release because they didn't fit on the LP, not because they weren't good enough.
Put the first eight tracks on your iPod, forget the alternates, and enjoy some vintage Zoot."