Randy Halberstadt

Flash Point

origin 82571



MUSIC REVIEW BY George Fendel, Oregon Jazz Society

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Seattle pianist Halberstadt is one of those rare, all-purpose cats who, when all's said and done, shines most brightly in a post-bop setting such as this. The quintet here includes Jeff Johnson, bass, and Mark Ivester, drums (his working trio), plus Mark Taylor on alto sax and Thomas Marriott on trumpet and flugelhorn. Of the nine tunes played here, six are originals by Halberstadt, so a brief examination of a few seems in order. The session opens with "Rigenia," a complex and invigorating vehicle, while "Five By Three" is more lyrical and ensemble-like. "Better Than One" is a rough-hewn blues with a Blue Note shadow lurking somewhere. The CD is completed by three tunes from the jazz book. "On Green Dolphin Street" and "Solar" are all dressed up in new harmonic and rhythmic attire, and the CD is completed by Sam Rivers' rarely heard entry, "Beatrice." Halberstadt swings mightily, but he also turns over plenty of solo space to two outstanding Seattle cats who seem to be showing up on recordings more frequently than ever. Taylor and Marriott are both heavy duty hard bop devotees who, along with the leader, account for themselves admirably. And don't forget Johnson. Simply stated, he's one of the world's premier bassists. Overlooked sometimes because he's a Seattleite. But brilliant just the same.






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