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Profiles of Mingus

Profiles of Mingus

3 Mar 2013
4.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Original Release Date: 3 Mar. 2013
  • Release Date: 3 Mar. 2013
  • Label: Trio Records (Chris Biscoe)
  • Copyright: (C) 2010 Trio Records
  • Total Length: 1:05:23
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B00BS7QFGW
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
There is already a fulsome review of this album on this site and I agree entirely with its content. Praise goes to all musicians involved but especially to the leader Chris Biscoe, Henry Lowther and Kate Williams who stand above the others. Each track has a different combination of musicians ranging from solo tracks to larger ensembles. This is an ambitious project; the tempation is to try to recreate the music of Mingusv verbatim which would be both a mistake and impossible; here Chris Biscoe and his colleagues reinterpret MIngus's best known work. A valiant enterprise rightly avoided by lesser musicians.
It is well worth listening to this album.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Chris Biscoe has been a stalwart of the British jazz scene for a number of years now. In that time he's figured in the membership of some of Mike Westbrook's bands and worked alongside the late and lamented trumpet / flugelhorn player Harry Beckett.

This is I think his second record project in which he's looked back to one of the seminal figures in post-bop American jazz, the first having been a nod in the direction of the undervalued Eric Dolphy, and with this one it's clearer than before that Biscoe is into a whole lot more than mere repertory.

Wisely he and his cohorts don't attempt to recreate the often incendiary delights that Mingus's bands offered. Instead the focus is on Mingus the composer, with perhaps significant focus also falling upon Mingus the bass player through the filter of Larry Bartley's work. There's a measure of reimagining too, which is arguably best exemplified by the third take of "Fables of Faubus" which opens the set as a trio for Biscoe on alto sax, trumpeter Henry Lowther and drummer Paul Clarvis. Over the course of two and a half minutes this unlikely group makes a crazed dance out of one of Mingus's most pointed political statements.

"Goodbye Pork Pie Hat" is both a dedication to Lester Young and one of Mingus's most tender ballads. In this reading the tenor saxes of Biscoe and Pete Hurt come together in empathetic fashion to do a whole lot more than evoke the spirit of Booker Ervin, for whom it was a feature all those years ago.

"Self-Portrait in Three Colours" is of a similar stripe, although as if by way of asserting his own identity Biscoe takes it on alto clarinet.
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