Various Artists

Cookin' With Blue Note, Vol. 2: 97 Tracks from the 4000 Series

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Cookin' With Blue Note 2: 97 Tracks from the 4000 Seriesis most certainly a different kind of Blue Note retrospective -- the subtitle is not a misprint, as the record does indeed feature a snippet from each and every one of the 97 officially released LPs that comprise the label's 4000 series, beginning with catalog number 4001 (Sonny Rollins' Newk's Time) and wrapping up with number 4100 (Jimmy Smith's Plays Fats Waller). A representative sample -- a particularly hot solo, for example, or a memorable intro -- is chosen for each session in question, with the results all mixed together in a continuous 70-minute flow. It's perfect for jazz and rare groove fans suffering from attention deficit disorders, but for most listeners the novelty is bound to wear off quickly -- each time a piece of music really grabs your attention, it evaporates in a matter of seconds. It's an admittedly fascinating idea, but far more interesting in concept than in execution.