What might have been a routine 1960 session is elevated to near-heroic status by the presence of the redoubtable, extremely funky Art Blakey at the drums, and some witty, pertinent piano from Wynton Kelly, not to mention the subtle bass of Paul Chambers, the latter two filched from the Miles outfit (having both played on Kind Of Blue - a badge of immortality if ever there was one).
Hank Mobley (1930-86) has a pleasing tone, a nice whispery feel on some notes, not totally unlike Art Pepper`s approach to tenor sax, sometimes placid rather than confrontational, placing the melody just so, saying as much as he needs to without overstating the case.
Wynton Kelly charms flocks of birds off several trees in all his flighty solos, a joy to hear. Blakey, as ever, is punchy, percussive, solid as a rock.
This is mainstream jazz to play to someone new to the music. It frightens no horses,
but has a smooth, sunny feel to most tracks (four out of the six by Mobley himself)
and is honest, open, swinging jazz from a vintage era.
With one of Blue Note`s typically apposite covers and a gleaming remastering, you can`t go wrong with this one.