This CD brings back one of the high points of singer Bill Henderson's career. Because he settled in Los Angeles, Henderson never became a major name but he was actually one of the top male jazz singers to emerge in the late '50s. Backed quite sympathetically by the swinging Oscar Peterson Trio (which consisted of pianist Peterson, bassist Ray Brown, and drummer Ed Thigpen), Henderson is in prime form on such songs as "All or Nothing at All," "Gravy Waltz," "I've Got a Crush on You," and "The Folks Who Live on the Hill"; four previously unissued songs round out the fairly definitive collection.
This is a great collection of rare and hard to find tunes compiled by Jeffrey Glenn. Hundreds of odds & ends by little known groups, famous singers, and famous singers before they became famous.
Psychonavigation is a trip and a half. Pete Namlook and Bill Laswell have created a set of sonic hallucinogens that permeate the psyche. These sequences and atmospheres are full of experimental sounds, strange samples, and overt space music riffs. There is nothing earthly about this music. The atmospheres are inhuman. The evocations are metallic and robotic. The flow, however, is smooth and fluid. Namlook and Laswell are visiting the ultimate oxymoron – fluid metal. The answers are as mysterious as quicksilver itself. This is one of the best Namlook/Laswell collaborations. It will appeal to fans of Amani, Tales, and Dweller at the Threshold. It is essential space music.
I had assumed that these recordings fit into the category of “he plays well under the circumstances.” Forget the qualifiers. Listening to this set and the previously released The Last Waltz is a bit like sharing the experience of the wild-eyed poet who has returned from feasting on the milk of paradise in Coleridge’s “Kubla Khan.” After tasting such nectar, nothing henceforward can satisfy the palette. So if the two sets (16 discs) comprising Evans’ last stand seem extravagant in quantity and price, consider the possibility that they represent the musical equivalent of Keats’ Grecian Urn, offering “all ye know and need to know.”
Much like Evidence's Fate in a Pleasant Mood/When Sun Comes Out two-fer, We Travel the Spaceways/Bad and Beautiful also features one album from the Chicago period and one from the New York period. The difference is that this New York session (Bad and Beautiful) is probably the first recording made in New York, and the overall sound is more closely tied to the Chicago sound than the later New York material, where rhythm and percussion dominated any melodic elements.