Bar code: 8427328424271
"It has been a number of years since my last recording as a leader. This new quartet is actually co-led by Adam Kolker. I want to take this opportunity to formally thank Adam for his persistence in getting the group up and running and into the studio to record this project. Adam and I had been talking about a chordless tenor/trumpet quartet for quite some time. While there is certainly a challenge coming up with material suitable for such an ensemble, the freedom that comes with this format makes this a very interesting and satisfying endeavor for me.
The band wouldnt work as well as it does if there wasnt such an open minded approach by everyone to the overall concept and to the treatment of new compositions that come into the group. I am so happy to be working with the rhythm section of Ugonna Okegwo and Victor Lewis. The amount of music they put into each arrangement is inspiring. I feel they are both fearless when it comes to diverging from the commonplace. What more can I say? I feel lucky to be playing with such world class musicians and I look forward to the future with this group."
"Though the groups named for the two horn guys, its tempting to suggest they retask the CD title and call themselves Andthem, because bassist and drummer both make an enormous contribution to the musics success, both as writers and performers. Okegwos bass lines and intros are big, firm-voiced and full of intrigue, and his Once Or Twice is an ideal composition for this group. Lewis plays with devastating simplicity as in the outdoorsy figures he supplies for Wendholts lovely Calypso but also rolls out the engaging Buttercup.
The group reminds me a little (perhaps because Lewis is a common factor and Okegwo a similar kind of bass player to Essiet Essiet) of Bobby Watsons Horizon Reassembled group on Palmetto, where Terell Stafford shares the front line. Its the same mix of tight, terse neo-bop and an effortless lyricism. The unisons are always pin-sharp, but theres sometimes a schematic, over-prepared feel to the improvised exchanges between the leaders. That disappears on the Charlie Parker line where at last you feel the chemistrys being allowed to do its work.
Beautiful photography in the liner from Wendholts late dad, and not just a personal tribute for the music is as big and expansive as the country it celebrates. The American art form at its best."
Brian Morton (April, 2014)