Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Bill McHenry @ The Village Vanguard
This is another of NPR's Village Vanguard concerts. However, whereas I liked the Billy Hart Quartet better on the recording I sampled than on the Vanguard concert I linked to, with the Bill McHenry Quintet is quite the opposite. The McHenry Quintet Vanguard concert, with McHenry's tenor backed by Duane Eubanks on trumpet, Andrew D'Angelo on alto sax and bass clarinet, Ben Street (again) on bass, and the wonderful Paul Motian on drums, is astoundingly good. Every note is compelling, and the sound is so jazz house real it makes my toes curl.
These guys should figure out some way to get this recording released as a CD. There is more than two hours of jazz here. It is edgy, but accessible, just a bit over the line to page four jazz. But best of all, it has that heart, that feeling. Some of it had the hair standing up on the back of my neck. The whole thing is available for download in MP3, so you can put it on your iPod, keep it on your hard drive, and burn the darn thing on a CD for your next road trip. You won't be sorry you hit this blog if it leads you to this session.
Here is a sample from a recent release. Ben Monder plays guitar, giving the album a slightly fusion feel. Reid Anderson is on bass, and Paul Motian on drums.