BoB – A Palindrome
(Bebob Records, www.roberthurst.com)
Recorded in October 2001 but not released until 2013, bassist Robert Hurt s album is an all-star affair, with, Branford Marsalis, Robert Glasper, Bennie Maupin, Marcus Belgrave, Jeff “Tain” Watts, and Adam Rudolph. The centerpiecea is a three-part suite, “Middle Passage, ” which begins with a brief introduction before sorrowful bass and hushed horns and a yearning flute solo pay homage to “Those of Us Who Didn’t Make It [Part II].” Part III, “For Those of Us Still Here,” calls to mind Jimmy Garrison in the powerful opening solo, which leads into Trane-like saxophone cries, which grows into feverish horns ultimately resolving onto an arco solo by the leader. Other pieces range from the upbeat opening waltz, “3 for Lawrence” to the little big band sound of “Tigers on Venus” and the Mwandishi-influenced closer, “Jamming – a.k.a. Ichabad.” Hurst has been featured in the bands of both Wynton and Branford Marsalis, Diana Krall, and others, and this release provides a great opportunity for Hurst to connect with audiences through his own music. There are some more recently recorded albums, also on his Bebob label, which have come out prior to this, and all are worth checking out.