When one thinks of Stan Kenton's 1951 music, it is of his huge Innovations Orchestra which sported a full string section and played very advanced works. However later in the year Kenton cut back to a conventional 19-piece band, a unit that was only together six months and made few studio recordings. This collector's CD features the all-star orchestra broadcasting from the Hollywood Palladium and it is particularly interesting to hear the unit interpreting some of Kenton's earlier hits. With such distinctive soloists as Maynard Ferguson, Shorty Rogers, Milt Bernhart, Art Pepper and Bob Cooper (plus a couple of vocals by Jay Johnson), the highlights include fresh versions of "Machito," "Eager Beaver," "Collaboration," "Painted Rhythm" and "Intermission Riff."
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AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow