Review from interneted.com
Davey Blue is an excellent album that focuses on one thing and one thing only—pure, unremitting clear-cut jazz. There are no vocals and no fancy avant-garde experimentations that make this album seem a work of abstraction, nor are there any frenzied free jazz solos or quirky fusions of various styles. Instead, David Newman and his band rely solely on classic jazz elements to carry this record. After hearing just a few of these songs, you realize that straightforward jazz is all that Newman and crew really need in order to create a stirring and highly respectable recording. Whether the compositions are led by Newmans elegant saxophone or Bryan Carrotts pristine vibraphone, you get the feeling that this record speaks much more clearly with music alone than many other records do with layers and layers of vocals.
Opening track, Cellar Groove begins right away with Newmans soulful sax playing a lively tune that is highlighted by Kenny Washingtons sporadic drumming and Bryan Carrotts vibraphone ghosting in between. Cristo Redentor is a much slower tune that finds David Newmans sax adding a fitting romantic atmosphere to the laid-back groove, while For Stanley is a funkier composition with some beautifully phrased sax playing and impeccably timed vibraphone accompaniment. Cedar Waltons piano subtly introduces A Child Is Born, which finds Newman trading his sax for the flute, making for a delicate and charming piece, and Black is a great track with a straightforward swinging sound and a creative forefront usage of percussion. The eerie vibraphones that begin Amandla belie the bright sound that follows, as Newman once again picks up the flute to deliver a graceful and vivacious performance, and the title track, Davey Blue is easily the darkest piece on the record, with its gently plodding piano chords and sensual sax leads. Closing out the album is Freedom Jazz Dance with its choppy rhythm providing an unlikely backbone for a number of dazzling instrumental solos. Though there is nothing truly revolutionary on Davey Blue, it is an excellently played and highly commendable representation of jazz music in general.
Summary: Straightforward jazz that speaks well for its genre
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