Friday, August 7, 2009

I Like Conflict

The album, that is. (rim shot!) I'm speaking of altoist Jimmy Woods' 1963 album Conflict, recorded for the Contemporary label and featuring an impressive lineup of Harold Land on tenor, Carmell Jones on trumpet, Andrew Hill on piano, George Tucker on bass and Elvin Jones on drums. This was only Woods' second session as a leader but it would prove to be his last, for reasons of which I'm unaware.

Conflict features six Woods originals; he also arranged all the selections. I originally bought the album used (for $35.00, gulp) when I was going through my obsessive Hill collecting phase. Hill certainly doesn't disappoint: Even though it was early in his career, his unique approach to rhythm and harmony are a positive disruption to the bop-influenced compositions. But Woods impresses as well, as he has an urgent, keening quality to his solos that set him apart from the pack. His tart tone and intervallic leaps, particularly on Apart Together and Look to Your Heart, remind me of Eric Dolphy, and in spots, mid-70s Braxton.

Doe anyone know what happened to him? Seems a shame he didn't record more.

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