This is a collection of two sets of recordings the first a studio recording after a long residence at the Bal Masque; the rest from a small group session from a similar period. The Bal Masque set is a mock live recording with really annoying unconvincing canned applause between tracks. On the positive side the band are incredibly tight and there is no sense of some Ellington recordings where the band are relatively new to some recordings and under-rehearsed. There are some great arrangements of familiar non-Ellington tunes where he instills originality and class into some unlikely material. The sound quality of the recordings is great and will please audiophiles. Not quite to the level of the 2004 Columbia DSD remasters but pretty close. In particular the small band sparser recordings sound really nice, the high hats sound delicious. I wouldn't say this is one of Ellingtons classic ground breaking CD's but its a lot of fun, so just kick back, ignore the canned applause and enjoy.