Michael Brecker: Naked Soul
Michael Brecker (tenor sax)
Tales from the Hudson (Impulse IMPD-191)
Joey Calderazzo (piano), Pat Metheny (guitar).
Composed by Michael Brecker.
Recorded: New York; released 1996
Rating: 98/100 (learn more)
Sounding very much like his chief influence John Coltrane, Michael Brecker blows out some introspective and at times inspirationally searching ideas throughout this powerful piece. Allowing Brecker to fully realize his goal of self-expression, Calderazzo's piano and Metheny's guitar are intuitively almost transparent. It is Dave Holland's brilliantly inventive bass and Jack DeJohnette's muscularly driving drums that work with Brecker to achieve his own personal musical nirvana. Holland always seems to be implying the direction like a trailblazer at the head of an exploration party. Brecker's performance is eerily impressive – not because he echoes Coltrane, for he has by now found his own distinctive sound – but because he seems to have realized that inner place of expression that Coltrane so famously strived for. This is a glimpse of the possibilities that Michael Brecker could and would achieve with his horn. A short Holland solo bares his own soul effectively while a wistful DeJohnette tickles the cymbals ever so lightly. As the name implies, Michael Brecker's "Naked Soul" was intended to expose his musical soul. To this end he and his fellow musicians surely succeeded.
Reviewer: Ralph A. Miriello