Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers: Live at Slug's, NYC (2006)
Those who are well versed in jazz will surely recognize a few of the names, such as trombonist Julian Priester and pianist Ronnie Mathews, and those who have at least a passing knowledge of the Jazz Messengers know that Blakey was able to bring out the best in everyone who surrounded him. This outing is no exception. These four tunes (one standard, two written by recent defector Slide Hampton, and the perennial Monk tune "Theme ) feature the same sense of propulsion and urgency that drives all the classic Blakey albums, and the three-horn front line sure delivers like the other more famous alums. Of special note are Lawrence Evans' spectacular bass solos, featuring the avant-garde techniques favored by Charlie Haden and Jimmy Garrison.
Although the sound is a bit muddled, the playing clearly isn't. This is a rare treasure for those Blakey fans who have it all.
Track Listing: New World; Angel Eyes; Slide No. 2; Theme.
Personnel: Art Blakey: drums; Ronnie Mathews: piano; Lawrence EVans: bass; Bill Hardman: trumpet; Julian Priester: trombone; Billy Harper: tenor saxophone.
Record Label: Empire Musicwerks