Trumpeter and flugelhorn veteran Bobulinski, employing some 25 years of experience with many heavyweights, has a brusque, shrill tone, almost like a double reed, on his instruments. It's not the dark, warm or punchy sound you'd generally associate. He gets around on his brass quite well, and in this quartet setting, he's helped by the always able pianist Bross Townsend, whose compings and voicings are always a treat. There are four of the leaders originals; the title track (for an imaginary Duke Ellington as a hibiscus) with many different Native American inflections, a strained boppish "Pork Chop," a head graft of three standards ("Au Privave-Some Other Blues-Cool Blues") on "Bird-'Trane-Bird," and the fourth "Jumpin' At Don's Pad" is a basic blues. Several famous tunes interpreted are a lengthy version of Frank Foster's "Simone," a clipped, effective take on Johnny Griffin's "Leave Me Alone Blues," a dixie slow "Groove Merchant," a slower "Lush Life," and "It Never Entered My Mind" to close. All are played close to the vest, with little extroversion. The disc leaves you wishing for a saxophone foil to duel with Bobulinski. For that, check out the trumpeter on saxophonist Chris Woods' Delmark CD Modus Operandi. This is only Bobulinski's second CD as a leader, and hopefully future releases will show him in a brighter light. At times the session is rough and unruly, enjoyable but raw.
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AllMusic Review by Michael G. Nastos