Max Roach: Valse Hot (1957)


Valse Hot


Max Roach (drums)


Jazz in 3/4 Time (Emarcy MG 36108)

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Max Roach (drums), Kenny Dorham (trumpet), Sonny Rollins (tenor sax), George Morrow (bass), Billy Wallace (piano).

Composed by Sonny Rollins


Recorded: Los Angeles, March 20, 1957


Rating: 92/100 (learn more)

Max Roach waltzes with Sonny Rollins again a year after they'd twice recorded "Valse Hot" at more plodding tempos. At first glance, the antiquated waltz form seemed as out of place in modern jazz as a plushly appointed, horse-drawn carriage clopping around the Indy 500. But this combination of hip and hoary proved surprisingly compatible. The band is thoroughly at ease with the metrical mutation, for which the leader gets special credit. Roach's timekeeping is steady as a grandfather clock and as swinging as its pendulum. Bright and tuneful, "Valse Hot" sparkles like the blue Danube following a spring rain.

Reviewer: Alan Kurtz


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