Karl Denson

Chunky Pecan Pie

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Karl Denson's tenor style is in the tradition of John Coltrane and Joe Henderson and sometimes resembles Ernie Watts, but without sounding like a copy of any of them. Although he mostly sticks to conventional notes, Denson plays quite passionately on six of his originals, plus an infectious version of Dexter Gordon's "Fried Bananas," most of which are performed in a sparse trio with bassist Dave Holland and drummer Jack DeJohnette. Pee Wee Ellis adds his tenor for a bit of a jam on the blues "Blue-Eyed Peas," while Gust Tsilis on marimba is heard in a supportive role on "Banana Boy." The exploratory "Waltz for Leslie" and the lyrical ballad "Heart of the Wanderer" are most impressive; Karl Denson deserves much greater recognition.

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