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Here comes the first recording as a leader of this excellent drummer, known for succeeding Billy Hart as the accompanist of the great singer and pianist Shirley Horn, whom he wouldn't leave for more than twenty years until she passed recently. In this album he is superbly surrounded, from track to track, by a real all-stars: bassist Michael Bowie, pianists Olivier Hutman and John Hicks, trumpets Roy Hargrove and the unknown Donvonte McCoy, alto Gary Bartz and tenor Antoine Roney. Except for two songs, one by Bowie, the other by McCoy, Williams and Hutman sign each the rest of all the original compositions, which track after track highlight the quality of the musicians in a pure post-bop language. It is interesting to make a special mention of the new comer Donvonte McCoy, remarkable trumpet and bugle player, who has to be listened to carefully on all the songs but particularly on his own composition "Song for the Petty Ones" where is shows a beautiful sensibility. The drums of Steve Williams can be heard with energy starting from the first song. Then, each of his interventions -breaks and choruses- as well as his accompaniment show clearly that it was time for him to lead this kind of band. No need to underline the other musicians talent on a recording full of pleasure of playing, for them, and listening, for us.

Translated from the review by Henri Marchal in La Semaine des Spectacles/Provence-Côte d'Azur January 24, 2007