Oliver Lake —
Wheels ... CD Passin' Thru, 2013. New Copy ....
A great large group project from reedman Oliver Lake – and a great reminder of his mighty strengths as a writer and arranger too! Right from the start, Lake's had a great ability to move between smaller, intimate settings and more ensemble-based music – and here, he's at the helm of a great batch of well-chosen reed players – all of whom move together as one to realize Lake's complicated charts for the record! The set explodes with bold hues and rich tones right from the start – a shifting palette that only gets stronger as the album moves through Oliver's original compositions – material played by Mike Lee and James Stewart on tenor, Darius Jones and Bruce Williams on alto, Jason Marshall on baritone, Stafford Hunter and Aaron Johnson on trombones, and Walton Ricks, EJ Allen, Nabate Isles, and Freddie Hendrix on trumpets. Titles include "Drum Thing", "Is It Real", "Philly Blues", "Maasai Moves", "Studder", and "Wheels Suite". CD
Reedman Oliver Lake at his most creative – stepping out here on a sublime set of 70s improvisations – all put together with a really spiritual feel! There's a very open, collaborative feel to the music – and the set was recorded in St Louis, at a time when Lake was a key part of that city's scene – and who here also seems able to attract some other musicians from the AACM in Chicago as well! As a result, the album's a wonderful document of the new ideas bursting forth at the start of the 70s – that richly creative moment when local scenes were coming together in various cities to find new ways of jazz beyond Coltrane and Dolphy – giving a player like Lake some of the most imaginative outlets of his career. Oliver plays alto, soprano, flute, and other small instruments – and other players include Baikida Carroll and Floyd Leflore on trumpets, Joseph Bowie on trombone, John Hicks on piano, Clovis Bordeaux on electric piano, Don Officer on bass, Charles Bobo Shaw on drums, and Don Moye on congas too. Titles include "Africa", "Tse Lane", "Eriee", "Zip", and "Electric Freedom". CD