This record was recorded by the Horace Silver Quintet in mid-1961 at the Village Gate in New York City. It features arguably Silver’s greatest of his many great bands. The ferocious Blue Mitchell on trumpet, Junior Cook on tenor, Gene Taylor bass and the great, mercilessly swinging Roy Brooks on drums.
Doin' the Thing
Kiss Me Right
The Gringo/Cool Eyes (Theme)
It Ain't S'posed to Be Like That
Doin the Thing sounds like I want every gig to sound. A great band playing soulful, swinging music with an audience who is enthusiastically along for the ride.
Silver’s compositions have always stood alone for their deep-rooted, almost spiritual emotional weight, and his uncanny back for foot-stomping connection with the listener. This to me is the single greatest objective in music, to pull the listener in, to share the experience.
The album sound is clear and pristinely recorded. Roy’s cymbals have an intimate clarity as he drives the band with sometimes just quarter notes, which is a trademark of his. He voices his ride cymbal below the rest of the kit which creates a smooth blanket for the rest of the band. Listen to the rhythm he plays on Filthy McNasty. His left hand plays an Earl Palmer-inspired straight-almost-swung quarter note which sits beautifully with the ride cymbal. This is very difficult to play with the kind of balance and clarity that Roy does at 185bpm. The tempo gradually drifts to 205bpm, during which Roy adjusts the left hand pattern to a simpler, more syncopated rhythm.
This is mainstream hard-bop played by masters; gritty, engaging, played with humour and a genuine intent to bring the listener along for a soulful good-time.
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