Reference: FSRCD 335
Bar code: 8427328603355
Perhaps because they had been working together with some degree of regularity since late in 1960, this turned out to be one of the most successful collaborations between Donald Byrd and Pepper Adams. Long-time friends and record-date mates, the two made a strong front line. While they are musically compatible, there are enough differences in their conceptions to give the group the necessary ingredient of contrast. The rhythm section featured for this particular recording the effective drumming of Jimmy Cobb -a Miles Davis regular- along with bassist Laymon Jackson, and a young Herbie Hancock on his first recording date. These three men gave the session at hand the solid, cohesive feeling that makes them so memorable.
"This set of sides recorded with the then-fledgling Donald Byrd/Pepper Adams quintet was taped for the long-defunct Warwick label. While Byrd and Adams along with Jimmy Cobb and Charles, who is only on one track here were veterans in Detroit before coming to the Big Apple, Herbie Hancock was a kid. His playing is the weak link here, but it nonetheless shows great promise and he acts more as an anchor for the wondrous interplay between the front line-check of Byrd's "Bird House" or the title track or even Johnny Mercer's "I'm an Old Cowhand" for the wooly, yet lyrical, interplay between this pair of soloists. With his rough and tumble tone punching through Byrd's elegant and fiery lines and creating a melodically charged harmonic invention in which the interval was everything, Adams came up with a session that was as passionate and innovative as it was hip and tender. This is a hell of an introduction to both players and captures their magic as a band better than any other document that is available on CD."
Thom Jurek -All Music Guide