Pepper Adams

The Cool Sound of Pepper Adams

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The Cool Sound of Pepper Adams is the kind of record one buys for its remarkable cover art (depicting a flame-haired beauty cupping a seashell to her ear) only to discover the music contained therein is just as spellbinding. A wonderfully soulful session featuring striking contributions from pianist Hank Jones and drummer Elvin Jones, its four lengthy cuts pulsate with energy and invention. Despite complementing Adams' baritone leads with Bernard McKinney's euphonium, the music never sounds bloated. Instead, it's supple and slinky, with a dexterity that's utterly winning. Still, there's no mistaking the physicality of Adams' tone. Songs like "Bloos, Blooze, Blues" and "Like…What Is This?" are as rich and smooth as crushed velvet.

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