Records PVC 1030
Trumpet: Guy Barker
Alto Saxophone: Rosario Giuliani
Tenor Saxophone: Denys Baptiste
Trombone: Barnaby Dickinson
Piano/Hammond Organ: Jim Watson
Bass: Orlando Le Fleming
Drums: Sebastiaan De Krom
Except "Susannah's Song" ( Trumpet: Guy Barker, Piano: Bernardo
Sassetti ) and "Queen Of The Night" (Trumpet: Guy Barker,
Bass, Geoff Gascoyne, Drums: Sebastiaan De Krom)
Recorded November 2001, Angel Studios, London.
2. Nature Boy
3. Waiting For The Delay
5. Susannah's Song
6. Izzatso !
7. Queen Of The Night
8. SOUNDS IN BLACK AND WHITE
- Opening Titles
- The Guy
- The Girl
- The Bad Guy
- The Chase, The Romance And The End
I must state from the outset that I thoroughly enjoyed this latest offering
from Guy Barker. Looking at the personnel prior to listening to the
album I expected a small group blowing session - of course there is
nothing wrong with that, but over the years there have been a great
deal of these to choose from and with the current re-issue program of
many of the leading companies there is no shortage of classic performances
to select from each month. What this disc has to recommend it is some
absolutely world class small ensemble writing . By integrating the organ
into the overall texture an impression of a much larger band is given.
There is still a high quota of improvisation, but it is beautifully
framed within the arrangements. All but two of the compositions are
by Barker and it would appear that the majority of the orchestration
are by him.
The opening track reminds me of so many different styles- I can hear
Buddy Rich and Gene Krupa in the orchestration and there are overtones
of Quincy Jones, Charles Mingus and even "Mission Impossible"
in this piece! Barker imposes himself on this number with a strong statement
which sets the tone for the whole session. The next piece has some lyrical
trumpet with more than a nod to mid-period Miles Davis and the arrangement
has a Gil Evans feel although the brass and saxophone backings conjure
up Duke Ellington.
"Waiting For The Delay " has some potent trombone playing
by Barnaby Dickinson on this bluesy " Sidewinder-ish" groove.
"Izzatso" is a joyous Latin piece with a tinge of Spain in
the theme, while the take on Mozart's "Queen Of The Night"
has an air of Mile's "Porgy And Bess" with a nod to Cootie
Williams and Rex Stewart audible in the growl trumpet with its half
Part two is Ellingtonian in the sense that it is a series of mini concertos
for the various soloists in the group. "The Guy" is played
by Denys Baptiste on a throaty sounding tenor saxophone which is one
of the many highlights on this disc. "The Girl is a feature for
the alto saxophone of Rosario Giuliani and shows off his modern tone
to its best advantage.
Throughout this disc the playing of Guy Barker is a revelation - he
obviously has very deep roots but has found his own personal voice.
If this is a taste of things to come I look forward to future releases
with great anticipation. Quite rightly this disc has recently been given
a Mercury Jazz award.