A PERIOD WHEN ALL TOO MANY JAZZ ARTISTS STICK TO COMMERCIAL
deserves credit for refusing to let tradition become a creative
Roberts- WESTWORD (5/99)
...PROVES THAT JAZZ ON THE EDGE
have to be a battle with the inexpressible-that even in its
explosiveness and unpredictability, there can be a level of
stasis that's alluring to the most unaquainted fan. The musical
ideas are launched in a historical context, with most cuts
starting and ending on familiar ground.
elaborately constructed nods to Duke Ellington on"Loose Leaves"
and Lester Young on "After the Leap." The entire ensemble
throw themselves into "Clarinade," emphasing their devotion
to collective creativity, and it proves to be an excellent
springboard for their ideas."
Guidry - JAZZTIMES (5/99)
FIRST RECORDING OF NEW MATERIAL FROM HESS AND
IN EIGHT YEARS IS A HUMDINGER. . . . . . Each
member of the ensemble is given ample room to move within
this framework and seem to be strong soloists in their own
right, often sliding solos against the overall orchestration.
Ironically, what makes this music memorable is that the compositions
seem to downplay individual considerations in favor of emphasizing
a collective ensemble sound. The Boulder Creative Music Ensemble
presents music of great complexity without the academic residue
that sometimes accompanies it. Hope-fully, it won't be another
eight years between recordings.
Morgan - CADENCE (4/99)
HIS MUSICAL QUEST, HESS has explored both the outer
edges of the music and its historical center of gravity in
terms of repertory pieces. What is so impressive about NINTH
STREET PARK is its integration of these very different
principles into a coherent whole. In Tracks such as After
The Leap and Loose Leaves, the bows to Lester Young
and Duke Ellington are turned into a launching pad for Hess'
imagination rather than destination points. Norman
Provizer - ROCKY MOUNTAIN NEWS
DISC BLENDS HOT VAMPS, smooth solos, and
swinging arrangements into a witty and gorgeous postmodern
Peake - WESTWORD
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