Gary Burton

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Talk about all-star groups -- this quintet date matches together vibraphonist Gary Burton with pianist Chick Corea, guitarist Pat Metheny, bassist Dave Holland, and drummer Roy Haynes. Burton and Corea have recorded frequently through the years, while Metheny gained some early fame working with Burton; Holland was with Corea in Miles Davis' late-'60s group, and Haynes was formerly with both Burton and Corea. However, not all of these musicians had played together before -- Corea had never worked with Metheny previously, nor Burton with Holland. No matter, the masterful players fit together quite well. The vibraphonist is the lead voice in the ensembles, where Metheny at times sounds close to Jim Hall and seems a bit restrained, but everyone gets a chance to contribute to the success of the CD. Metheny contributed five songs (including "Question and Answer" and "Elucidation," which deserves to be a standard), while Burton brought in two; Corea's three contributions include his classic "Windows." The lone standard is George Gershwin's "Soon." The music is modern straight-ahead jazz; the solos are concise and the rhythm section is quite tight. In fact, this sounds like a regularly working band. Highly recommended.

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