Bheki Mseleku

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Timelessness Review

by Greg Turner

On Bheki Mseleku's American label debut, jazz greats Joe Henderson, Abbey Lincoln, Pharoah Sanders, and Elvin Jones, plus up-and-comers Kent Jordan and Rodney Kendrick, join the South African-born London resident and his trio mates Michael Bowie and Marvin "Smitty" Smith for a diverse program of Mseleku originals. And the stars make their presence felt. The uptempo title track has one of the best Henderson solos heard anywhere. The beautiful "Through the Years" features Lincoln's lyrics and a heartfelt vocal. Sanders contributes some forceful tenor sax on the joyous "Yanini," while the bouncy "Homeboyz" puts the percussive piano vamp of Kendrick under Mseleku's alto sax. As for Jones, the drum legend proves he is also a master of brushes and soft bass drum on the introspective "My Passion." Mseleku primarily plays McCoy Tyner-influenced piano on this recording, but his tenor and alto sax work are more than adequate. Timelessness is an impressive American label debut for this talented artist.

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