Bill McHenry: The Lizard


The Lizard


Bill McHenry (tenor sax)


Roses (Sunnyside 291167)

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Bill McHenry (tenor sax), Ben Monder (guitar), Reid Anderson (bass), Paul Motian (drums).

Composed by Bill McHenry


Recorded: New York, December 20-21, 2006


Rating: 90/100 (learn more)

Bill McHenry's most recent four records have featured the stunning guitar work of Ben Monder, a prodigious alumnus of the bands of Paul Motian and Maria Schneider. On Roses, the latest of these releases, the McHenry/Monder partnership is supplemented by Bad Plus bassist Reid Anderson and drummer Paul Motian. "The Lizard" is a good starting point to discover the group's original take on melody-centric free jazz. McHenry's long-tone dominated tenor statement, in and of itself affirming his role as one of the leading New York improvisers, comes first. A virtuosic jazz/rock offering from Monder is next. The farther Anderson and Motian are led out on limbs by McHenry and Monder as the track develops, the more inspired their playing becomes. The fun these four improvisational risk-takers were having in the studio makes for an equally enjoyable listening experience.

Reviewer: Eric Novod

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