Known mainly to be the accompanist
of Shirley Horn for twenty five years and, with her, to play with some
of the greatest, from Miles Davis to the Marsalis brothers, Steve Williams
signs here his first album as a leader. In a set up typically bop/hard
bop, he is surrounded by musicians well accustomed to this musical idiom.
So well that the conversation around themes composed by the leader and
some of the members of the band occurs very smoothly. But far from any
routine. And complicity is obvious between Donvonte McCoy, trumpet to
pay attention to, and Antoine Roney, to mention just the two of them.
To be convinced about it, just listen to Dom’s song where their
respective contribution follows on with an unruffled logic. The drummer,
never intruding, shows a joyful drive which doesn’t exclude nor
finesse of listening or pertinence of intervention. Regarding the guests,
who play on two tunes, they find easily their place in this family reunion,
ideal setting for the lyricism of Gary Bartz and the energetic velocity
of Roy Hargrove. Just for that merging harmony and for the quality of
the soloists, this album, which doesn’t pretend to innovate, has
to be recommended.
Tranlated from Jacques Aboucaya Jazz Magazine
February 2007 n°578