CLIFFORD BROWN
                    MAX ROACH
                  At Basin Street

                  Recording Date:
                     January 4, 1956  tk 4,7
                     February 16, 1956 tk 1-2
                     February 17, 1956 tk 3,5,6

                     Clifford Brown   TP
                     Sonny Rollins      TS
                     Richie Powell     P
                     George Morrow  B
                     Max Roach         D


The Clifford Brown-Max Roach quintet was already one of the best in modern jazz, but when they added Sonny Rollins to the fray in late 1955, it became a lineup for the ages. Basin Street, recorded in early 1956, marks the studio debut of Rollins with the band, and the result is a supercharged highlight of the postbop era. The three furiously paced standards that kick off the set feature superb blowing and crafty arrangements that offer spontaneous intros and rhythmic shifts. Of special note are the contributions of pianist Richie Powell, Bud's younger brother, who not only adds three excellent compositions (the intricate "Powell's Prances," the poignant "Time," and the irresistibly catchy "Gertrude's Bounce"), but also proves himself to be a standout soloist and accompanist. Of course, Brown's bright tone and remarkably fluid ideas are in full bloom as well. Sadly, the quintet would record only once more (Plus 4, issued under Rollins's name) before the June 1956 accident that claimed the lives of Brown and Powell. --Marc Greilsamer

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