Thomas Marriott's second recording is a thoroughly impressive affair, recorded over two studio sessions a few months apart. With a band including pianist Marc Seales, bassist Jeff Johnson, and drummer John Bishop, the leader kicks off the disc with "Both Sides of the Fence," a driving post-bop original that showcases his lyrical chops on flugelhorn in an uptempo setting. Seales switches to electric piano for Marriott's rather dark "The Ninnen," which builds upon a repeated motif into a tense climax. But the leader will turn heads with his choice of older material: delivering a spacious muted trumpet solo in a lush ballad setting of Duke Ellington's rarely performed "New World A-Comin'" and offering a mellow, contemporary arrangement of Freddie Hubbard's "Sky Dive" (a fusion piece from the veteran's CTI years). Vibraphonist Joe Locke, who also guested on a few tracks of Marriott's debut effort, is added for "So Near, So Far" and "Tones for Joan's Bones."