This valuable and attractive two-LP set from 1978 issued for the first time a couple of sessions by altoist Jackie McLean that had been lost in the vaults. The 1962 date is fairly boppish with McLean being teamed with trumpeter Kenny Dorham, pianist Sonny Clark, bassist Butch Warren and drummer Billy Higgins. The emphasis is on blues and straightahead swinging but even here McLean sounds like he is pushing the boundaries a bit. The later session features McLean, trombonist Grachan Moncur, pianist Lamont Johnson, bassist Scotty Holt and Higgins. Despite some soulful moments, the music sounds ten (rather than five) years more advanced and is strongly influenced (but not derivative) of the avant-garde players. Despite being overlooked, the music on both of these dates is up to the high level of Jackie McLean's better-known Blue Note dates and is easily recommended to fans of the innovative altoist.
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AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow