Having lived with these tracks for about 50 years, repeated listening has confirmed that these are the finest recordings of a 'classic' New Orleans ensemble ever made. The front line are completely integrated with no one (not even Louis Armstrong!) trying to hog the limelight. There are no 'star' soloists and the cornets, clarinet, and trombone, although distinctive voices, blend together to create a polyphony so perfect as to almost defy belief.
Sadly, this perfection could not last. The era of the great soloists was about to dawn and, although - for example - Armstrong, Hawkins, Bechet, etc created magnificent music, the very fact of their individual creativity meant the end of the truly integrated ensemble until the early 1940's. Duke Ellington, in the Blanton-Webster band, created just this and, importantly, found a way of integrating important solo voices within the ensemble that detracted from neither. But that's another story!
This edition of the Oliver Creole Band recordings was been splendidly remastered by the late, lamented, John R T Davis and contains the complete Gennett, Okeh, Columbia and Paramount sessions. Alternate takes are included. All in all, a perfect reissue of some of the most important of all jazz records.