Pete Yellin may not be the biggest name in jazz, but not for the lack of effort by the alto saxophonist on this excellent studio date. Joined by a superb cast including trumpet Nicholas Payton (recorded right around the time his star was beginning to rise), tenor saxophonist Bob Mintzer, and a rhythm section of Stephen Scott, Dwayne Burno, and Carl Allen, Yellin's well-crafted charts bring out the best in his pickup group. His soulful playing on a hard-driving workout of Thelonious Monk's "Monk's Dream" and spirited soprano sax on Frank Foster's blues "Simone" are especially noteworthy. Payton and Mintzer are equally capable soloists throughout the date. The CD is book ended by two of Yellin's originals, the lively post-bop "Air for Aaron" and a snappy hard bop tribute to Art Blakey, "Yea-Buh." This CD may be somewhat challenging to locate due to the somewhat erratic availability of Mons CDs, but it is well worth acquiring.
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AllMusic Review by Ken Dryden