This single CD has all 22 recordings by the Halfway House Orchestra, including four selections not originally released until the 1970s. One of the finest jazz bands active in New Orleans during the 1920s, the group was led by Albert Brunies and was somewhat reminiscent at times of his brother George Brunies' band, The New Orleans Rhythm Kings. The first session (resulting in "Pussy Cat Rag" and "Barataria") includes the ill-fated clarientist Leon Rappolo (doubling on alto). Otherwise, the band features the leader on cornet, Charlie Cordella or Sidney Arodin on clarinet, altoist Joe Loyacano, and a four-piece rhythm section that is driven by Chink Martin on tuba or bass. Their versions of "Maple Leaf Rag" and "Let Me Call You Sweetheart" are quite memorable and many of the group's originals deserve to be revived by current-day trad bands. A perfectly realized reissue by the Canadian Jazz Oracle label.
AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow