It's always regrettable when a high-quality jazz band isn't recorded as much as it deserves to be; in fact, it's downright tragic that Thelonious Monk's 1957 performances with John Coltrane at the Five Spot in New York weren't documented extensively. But thankfully, Gerry Mulligan's Concert Jazz Band of 1960-1963 was well documented and resulted in some rewarding albums. One of them is Zurich, 1960, which was recorded live at Mustermesse Basel in Zurich, Switzerland, on November 17, 1960. This CD finds the 14-piece Concert Jazz Band in excellent form during a concert that ranges from well-known standards (including "Body and Soul" and "You Took Advantage of Me") to swinging Mulligan originals like "The Apple Core," "C," and "Walkin' Shoes." Although Mulligan's subtle, lyrical baritone sax is the main attraction -- arguably, he was the Stan Getz of the baritone -- the improviser doesn't hesitate to feature such five-star soloists as trumpeter Conte Candoli, tenor saxman Zoot Sims, trombonist Bob Brookmeyer, and alto saxman Gene Quill (who is also heard on clarinet). And whoever is taking a solo, the band has a consistently insightful and sensitive drummer in Mel Lewis.
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AllMusic Review by Alex Henderson