Melvin Rhyne

Stick to the Kick

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On his fourth Criss Cross release, organist Melvin Rhyne is joined by trumpeter Ryan Kisor, tenor saxophonist Eric Alexander, guitarist Peter Bernstein, and drummer Kenny Washington to perform six Rhyne originals, two jazz classics, and one standard, the beautiful ballad "Laura," a feature for Alexander's tenor sax. Best known for a stint with Wes Montgomery during the late '50s and early '60s, Rhyne displays an understated but distinctive organ sound and strong basslines, complementing the youthful energy that Kisor and Alexander bring to the session. Bernstein and Washington are veterans of Rhyne's other three Criss Cross releases, two of them by the trio, resulting in what could be a great working group. Other favorites include "J. Robin," a medium swinger that alternates between funk and Latin feels in the head, "Captain McDuff," a medium shuffle written in tribute to fellow organist Jack McDuff, Bud Powell's aptly titled "Wail" (taken at a blazing tempo), and the relaxed groove of "It's Love." This is a welcome addition to Rhyne's growing discography.

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