In the early days of his career, trumpeter Wallace Roney was tagged as being yet another Miles Davis-influenced player, though a focused hearing of his fourth CD as a leader will demonstrate how much he was developing his own voice on this exciting hard bop session with tenor saxophonist Gary Thomas, pianist Donald Brown (like the leader, an alum of Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers), bassist Christian McBride, and drummer Cindy Blackman. Roney's furious "Obsession" crackles with energy, showcasing the trumpeter, Thomas, and Brown. McBride contributed the loping, bluesy "Black Moon," while Blackman's "Scenario One" is full of twists, dominated by her drums. The one standard is "Alone Together," with Roney utilizing a mute, inviting the inevitable comparisons to Miles. But the sizzling take of "Donna Lee" finds Roney very much in his own voice. An enjoyable early effort, Obsession unfortunately lapsed from print with the sale of Muse, and it is increasingly difficult to acquire.
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AllMusic Review by Ken Dryden