Reference: FSRCD 748
Bar code: 8427328607483
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The Bridge was the first album Sonny Rollins recorded after he returned to the jazz scene in late 1961, following a two-year layoff to practice and reflect during a time of great stylistic upheaval in the music. If the sabbatical added to his instrumental command and his musical understanding, the triumphal return confirmed that this was the same authoritative player of the classic Saxophone Colossus, Way Out West and Village Vanguard albums.
Fronting his new quartet, Sonny Rollins & Co, which included guitarist Jim Halla surprising but brilliantly successful choicebassist Bob Cranshaw and drummer Ben Riley, Rollins, in stirring form, played with a high-minded seriousness even deeper than before. He is particularly compelling on God Bless the Child and Without a Song, but the key factor in a striking, emotionally gripping album his interaction with Hall. Whether as a rhythm partner or as a soloist, Hall epitomizes intuition and sensitivity, bringing another reflective dimension to the music.
And the magic endured when they recorded the performances on the under-rated Whats New? a few months later, with magisterial playing on If Ever I Would Leave You and The Night Has a Thousand Eyes.
"Tenor saxophonist Sonny Rollins' first recording after ending a surprising three-year retirement found the great saxophonist sounding very similar to how he had played in 1959, although he would soon start investigating freer forms. In a pianoless quartet with guitarist Jim Hall, bassist Bob Cranshaw, and drummer Ben Riley, Rollins explores four standards (including "Without a Song" and "God Bless the Child") plus two fiery originals, highlighted by the title cut. The interplay between Rollins and Hall is consistently impressive, making this set a near-classic and a very successful comeback."
—Scott Yanow (All Music Guide)