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NY Midnight Suite

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Album Review

Underground Texas trumpet legend Dennis Gonzalez came out of retirement in 1999 and assembled a trio with his two sons. In 2003, he was approached by Dave Douglas and Roy Campbell to come to New York and be part of a trumpet festival at Tonic. The participants included Graham Haynes, Bill Dixon, Raphe Malik, Cuong Vu, Matt Lavelle, Lewis Barnes, and others. The band Gonzalez assembled for this evening was a magical one, with Ellery Eskelin, Mark Helias, and drummer Mike Thompson. 35 minutes of that set was captured on tape and makes up the three pieces on the second half of this recording. The other half is the magical three-part, "NY Midnight Suite," presented in reverse order, recorded two days later in a studio. Together these halves prove that lightning can indeed strike twice. For all of the "out jazz" credentials of its participants, this band considers an ensemble vibe that digs for the heart of lyric harmony, no matter where it is to be found. They swing, stroll, sing, sweep, wail and weep on these sides, and the listener is captivated from beginning to end. The solid support given by Helias and Thompson to the interplay between the horns is remarkable for its fluency and fluidity, and in its commitment to keep the music traveling,. The deference and willingness of the front line is quite literally stunning, in places, full of soul and fire. Highly recommended.

NY Midnight Suite, Dennis González NY Quartet
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