Bassist Scott Lee has worked as a sideman with Chet Baker, Joe Lovano, Joe Roccisano, Roseanna Vitro, and many others, though he has had relatively few opportunities to lead dates of his own. Lee's third CD focuses on 11 of his post-bop originals, interpreted by fellow New York City-based players with whom he has played fairly often (excepting pianist George Colligan), including saxophonists Andrew Rathbun and Loren Stillman and drummer Jeff Hirschfield. "A.R.," dedicated to Rathbun, is a demanding vehicle that constantly shifts gears, yet the bandmembers tackle it as if they had played it nightly for weeks. The cheerful, sauntering "The Lope" is well named, with Rathbun's tenor and Stillman's alto leading the way over the buoyant rhythm section. "Conversations" has the flavor of an improvisation, though Lee reveals in Mark Gardner's liner notes that it is actually a series of duets joined together. This rewarding date should earn Scott Lee additional opportunities to record under his own name.
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AllMusic Review by Ken Dryden