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Reviewers: Don Mather, Marc Bridle, Ian Lace, Peter Woolf, Colin Clarke

Friendship Pagoda

Martin Krusche Tenor sax
Nicholas Payton trumpet
Victor Atkin Piano
David Pulphus Bass
Geoff Clapp Drums
Naxos Jazz 86057-2

  1. Phoenix
  2. Southern Belles
  3. Chelsea Bridge
  4. I'd Like to Sing
  5. Bad Breakfast
  6. Fatima
  7. The Night has a Thousand Eyes

A fine recording debut by an exciting band led by Martin Krushe on tenor sax. Martin also composed most of the material, which is all well worth listening to. The star of the piece for me however, is Trumpeter Nicholas Payton who more than anyone else in the band, has absorbed a great deal of jazz history into his playing, which makes his contemporary message much more interesting. Martin Krusche is an excellent musician, but I feel he would be even better, if he was to take on board the timing of Zoot Sims to add to his already superb technique on the instrument. Come to think of it perhaps a little of Lester Young and Stan Getz as well! The fact that the band sounds least comfortable on the only standard on the album may prove the point.

It is not my wish however to detract from a very good CD, by five very worthy musicians who provided me with 70.26 minutes of enjoyment. A favourite track? 'The night has a thousand Eyes' a jazzer's standard, but not a standard in the generally accepted meaning of the words.

Don Mather

Don Mather is a Saxophone Player and Bandleader based in Coventry

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