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Reviewers: Don Mather, Dick Stafford, John Eyles, Jack Ashby




Crotchet

Chris Potter - ‘Traveling Mercies’

Verve 018 234 - 2

 

 

 

 

Personnel Chris Potter - Saxophones, Bass Clarinet, Alto Flute, Sampler, Reed Organ & Vocal (track 3), Kevin Hays – Piano, Fender Rhodes & Clavinet, Scott Colley – Bass, Bill Stewart – Drums, John Schofield – Guitar (tracks 1&7), Adam Rogers – Guitar (tracks 3&8), Dave Binney – Waterfall sampler (track 2) and Elizabeth Dotson-Westphalen – Vocal sample (track 7).

1

Megalopolis

6

Any Moment Now

2

Snake Oil

7

Migrations

3

Invisible Man

8

Azalea

4

Washed Ashore

9

Highway One

5

Children Go

10

Just As I Am

 

Chris Potter is yet another name to emerge from the vast wealth of unknown, yet highly talented musicians, in the United States. Originally he went to New York to play with Red Rodney’s band and since then he has toured or recorded with the Mingus Big Band, Steely Dan, Jim Hall and James Moody to name but a few. Currently he is enjoying a European tour opening with the Dave Holland Band, with whom his playing is best known, and then giving a series of concerts with his own quartet.

‘Magalopolis’ is an ideal opener and typical of Potter’s musical composition. He is soon into an explosive solo full of riffs and runs across the whole range of the instrument. ‘Invisible Man’ introduces another facet of his work this time his flute playing is over-dubbed with his voice. The complete piece provides a plaintive and haunting atmosphere and again the saxophone playing is innovative to say the least. ‘Highway One’ is a track that specifically held my interest. Hays’ weaving piano solo is accompanied by some of the best backing rhythm on the disc and Potter’s soprano work completes a solid performance. It is difficult to envisage an assembly of better accompanists as he has here – they enthusiastically explore and work off each other.

His earlier album ‘Gratitude’ has been very well received and ‘Traveling Mercies’ I am sure will be as popular.

Chris Potter is at the forefront of the current generation of musicians who are already well advanced into moulding yet another shape to modern music both in terms of composition and performance.

Jack Ashby



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