Dave Glasser

Dreams Askew, Dreams Anew

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Dave Glasser doesn't fall for the latest gimmicks, but offers pure jazz in a consistently swinging setting. Starting with an impressive unaccompanied interpretation of "Pannonica," the alto saxophonist signals that he is also looking for fresh approaches to familiar songs. On the rest of the CD, his impeccable rhythm section (Barry Harris, Peter Washington, and Lewis Nash) provides him with ample support. Harris' subtle solo in Tadd Dameron's infrequently performed "Focus" is also an object of beauty, while the strolling take of Duke Ellington's gorgeous "Don't You Know I Care" invites memories of the legendary Johnny Hodges. His bop chops are hardly in question in "Moose the Mooche," where he mixes both gritty and melodic styles into his solo. But a hefty portion of this studio session focuses on Glasser's thoughtful originals. "Ode to a Toad" has a jaunty air, while "Revol-ver" is a tense work full of twists in an uptempo setting. "Dreams Askew, Dreams Anew" is a bittersweet ballad that also invites comparison to Johnny Hodges' lyricism; there's no mistaking the story that Glasser is telling on his horn. "Funny Money" is a sassy Latin number that adds trumpeter Kurt Weiss. The title "Czakass" may be Glasser's idea of a Polish joke (the first two letters are pronounced like a "j" in Polish), but the piece itself is a smoldering slow blues. He closes with an unaccompanied performance of his intimate ballad "Love Letters." This is another fine date by a musician deserving of wider recognition.

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