Andy Middleton: Cherry Street


Cherry Street


Andy Middleton (soprano sax)


The European Quartet Live (Rious QRM 109-2)

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Andy Middleton (soprano sax),

Tino Derado (piano), Paul Imm (bass), Alan Jones (drums)


Composed by Andy Middleton


Recorded: live at Hanover Hall and Birdland, Hamburg, Germany, April 11-12, 2005


Rating: 89/100 (learn more)

Transplanted Brooklynite Andy Middleton now makes his home in Vienna. While having played with the likes of Ralph Towner and Dave Holland, as a leader he views his current quartet to be the most inspiring he has ever worked with.

On "Cherry Street" we find Middleton at his most lyrical and beautiful. He dedicated this composition to a fellow musician, Christoph Eidens, who died of lung cancer in 2005, when this session was recorded. Middleton chooses soprano sax for a bittersweet somberness that wrings out sober but uplifting feelings for a friend who has passed. His quartet is particularly empathetic. Middleton leaves poignant pauses throughout his solo that only magnify what he does play. He is extremely melodic here, and his flights of impassioned runs are separated by space to great effect. Derado's piano is appropriately pensive and blue tinged. Imm's bass produces a full lush tone to fill the spaces as Middleton's languishing saxophone reaches the coda. This being a live performance, the crowd could be a factor in a quietly done piece, but remains respectably quiet until the final applause. A fitting tribute to a lost comrade.

Reviewer: Ralph A. Miriello


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