Unbiased reviews of new vinyl releases, audiophile reissues, and more

Monday, October 4, 2010

Quick Jazz Pick: Joe Henderson -- Inner Urge (Music Matters 45 RPM 180 Gram Vinyl)

If you've already subscribed to the Music Matters 45 RPM Blue Note jazz series, then you're used to receiving two great Blue Note titles every month--featuring beautiful glossy covers and gatefold photos, excellent pressing quality, and superlative mastering and sound.  If you're not a subscriber and are trying to cherry-pick some of the titles, it can become quite difficult to keep up--and costly as well, if a title slips past you and goes out of print.  Myvinylreview's Quick Pick, will endeavor to bring some of these titles, as well as other outstanding reissues to your attention.  And while this feature won't include lengthy comparisons to original pressings or earlier reissues, you can be assured that an offering won't be included unless it is extraordinary with regard to both music and sound quality.

This week's selection, cut onto four sides of 45 RPM vinyl by Music Matters, is tenor saxophonist Joe Henderson's 1965 masterpiece, Inner Urge.  Recorded just ten days before John Coltrane's A Love Supreme, and featuring two out of three of its supporting players--McCoy Tyner on piano and Elvin Jones on drums, plus Bob Cranshaw on bass, Inner Urge captures Henderson and this excellent supporting cast at what many feel was his creative peak.

Joe Henderson, Inner Urge Session (1964)


The first three cuts on Inner Urge--penned by Henderson, have a distinctly modern feel to them, with the final two traditional hard bop numbers--the Duke Pearson composed, You Know I Care, and the Cole Porter standard, Night and Day, while adeptly performed, sounding more like an extension of the status quo. And while all of the Henderson compositions are outstanding, El Barrio is a forward-thinking masterpiece, taking full advantage of the skills and intuition of Tyner and Jones, who propel the piece forward, and set the mood with a sound that isn't too far from A Love Supreme.   El Barrio forshadows works from the likes of Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, and others that wouldn't come along for several years.  

This 45 RPM pressing from Music Matters richly presents all of the emotion of Henderson's horn, from the fiercely distorted opening squawks of El Barrio, to his buttery-smooth tenor tones--and does so with a dynamic range, extended tonal palatte, and clarity that has come to be expected from the Music Matters jazz series.

Highly Recommended

click image to buy
from Music Matters


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the review...I ordered my copy of Inner Urge on Monday, and can't wait to give it a spin.

Post a Comment