Assembled each year to coincide with the Detroit International Jazz Festival, the Mack Avenue Superband is just that; a supergroup of Mack Avenue label jazz stars. Following up their 2012 debut album, Live from the Detroit Jazz Festival: 2013 showcases the group's performance at the storied free festival. As with the 2012 ensemble, the 2013 lineup was designed to bring together both established and up-and-coming artists from across stylistic boundaries. Featured in 2013's ensemble were such names as bassist Rodney Whitaker, drummer Carl Allen, pianist Aaron Diehl, trumpeter Sean Jones, guitarist Evan Perri, saxophonist Kirk Whalum, and vibraphonist Warren Wolf. Also featured as a special guest artist is journeyman vibraphonist Gary Burton. Fittingly, the concert album finds the group delving into a wide array of jazz sounds, from soulful groove ("Soul Sister") to dramatic impressionism ("Blue Nude"), rollicking post-bop ("Chick's Tune"), regal, Django Reinhardt-influenced Gypsy jazz ("Troublant Bolero"), and more. As both a souvenir of the festivities and an eminently listenable album, Live from the Detroit Jazz Festival: 2013 is a winning date.
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AllMusic Review by Matt Collar