Alto and soprano saxophonist Mark Taylor and labelmates RadioAction recorded this 8- track session in Brooklyn in January 2002. Opening with Monk's "Bye Ya," they serve notice that they are as entrenched in a modern style as they are reverential of the masters. Following a strong opening statement by Taylor, pianist Whitney Ashe delivers a muscular solo augmented by the powerful rhythm team of drummer Matt Jorgensen and bassist Gary Wang.
Wang sets a motif for the band to work off on Taylor's wonderfully visual "After Hours," on which all shine. On Jimmy Garrison's "Sweet Little Maia" Taylor is especially inventive. On his "The Drifter," Ashe takes an extended and well-conceived solo that matches the work of any pianist working today. Taylor's solo is equally impressive.
For their version of Carla Bley's "Around Again," Taylor and company take a slightly dissonant route, and on the closing "Walker Evans," Ashe's stately piano sets Taylor up for a beautiful solo.
This appealing and challenging independently released disc from Taylor and company is a thoroughly enjoyable set.