Roy Haynes has had a long career, and the generically titled The Roy Haynes Trio featuring Danilo Perez and John Patitucci is a long CD, approaching 70 minutes, that attempts to recap that career in the form of new performances and, to a surprising extent, succeeds. The drummer had just turned 74 when this album was released, and had been recording since the 1940s. He took the opportunity of this collection with a new trio, which contained both studio and live recordings, to look back over that period by choosing tunes associated with many of the musicians he had worked with over the years. His tenure in Bud Powell's Modernists septet was recalled in the opening number, Powell's "Wail," which also served the purpose of establishing right off the bat that Haynes was still drumming with his usual power and aggressiveness. Then, Pat Metheny's Spanish-tinged "Question and Answer" harked back only to the late '80s and early '90s and his work with the guitarist. And so it went: Haynes' five-year tenure behind Sarah Vaughan was referenced on "Shulie a Bop," one of her scat numbers, while Miles Davis' "Sippin' at the Bells" and Thelonious Monk's "Bright Mississippi" and "Green Chimneys" reminded listeners of his periods with each. All of this made for a varied collection, but the trio format allowed plenty of room for the individual musicians to play extensively and put their marks on the disparate material. In fact, the effect was to suggest that the history of jazz since World War II, which has been perceived as a series of conflicting trends, actually coheres well. At least, it does when Roy Haynes is behind the drums.
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AllMusic Review by William Ruhlmann