One of the key records from the Cadet/
Concept scene in late 60s Chicago – a tremendous collaboration between pianist Ramsey Lewis
and arranger Charles Stepney – and the kind of record that took soul and jazz to a whole new level! Ramsey
on his own is great enough at this point – but add in Stepney's touch, and the record becomes something really brilliant – a blend of soaring strings, groovy rhythms, and spaciously stepping piano lines – all held together with a tremendous amount of creative imagination! The group here features a young Maurice White on drums and Cleveland Eaton on bass – both hitting a groove that's quite different than the Ramsey Lewis
Trio sound of years back, with a lot more space, a lot hipper rhythms, and just the right sort of groove to match Stepney's sophisticated touches. The piano gets a bit electric at times, but is mostly acoustic overall – and titles include a great version of Minnie Riperton's "Les Fleur", a funky version of "Mighty Quinn", and the cuts "Afro Boogaloo Twist", "Maiden Voyage", "Ode", "Do You Know The Way To San Jose", "Only When I'm Dreaming", and "Eternal Journey".
(Blue label stereo pressing. Cover and labels have a drillhole through the center.)