Ralph Peterson's second session for Criss Cross features an identical band to his earlier date for the Dutch label, including pianist Orrin Evans, saxophonist Jimmy Greene, bassist Eric Revis, and the promising young trumpeter and flugelhornist Jeremy Pelt. Peterson wrote seven originals for the quintet and also added a pair of creative, yet not excessively long drum solos. Like his earlier series of recordings for Blue Note, Peterson's charts are full of excitement and a few surprises, stimulating his musicians into playing at their very best; a prime example is the high-energy "Trial of Trust and Treachery." The soft unison line produced by Pelt and Greene (on soprano sax), with the leader's soft mallet technique underneath, is another gem of the date. Only one standard, "I Only Miss Her When She's Gone," is included, but Peterson's arrangement brings out the emotion of its powerful lyrics, even though they aren't heard. This is the type of CD that doesn't grab one's attention upon the first hearing, but whose strengths gradually become obvious with time. Highly recommended.
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AllMusic Review by Ken Dryden