The Mastersounds

Kismet

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Recorded in the late '50s and released in 1966 when the name Wes Montgomery became well known, this reading of Borodin's evergreen classic "Kismet" is a wondrous platter. The Mastersounds were the Montgomery brothers' group before Wes stepped out on his own. Monk and Buddy Montgomery were excellent musicians in their own right. Buddy's vibe work on this record clearly shows that he was leading the group through their paces, and his performance is excellent. Top marks also for piano player Richard Crabtree, whose vamp on "Baubles, Bangles & Beads" is positively funky. Wes was indeed coming into his own here, and for just that reason alone this is an important record. Although merely an accompanist, he gets to stretch out on the extended "Not Since Nineveh" and the snaky, Eastern-tinged "Fate." Overall, an excellent jazz reading of one of the most beloved musicals ever and also an important historical record for Wes Montgomery fans.

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