Henry Grimes Solo

Henry Grimes' re-entry into the world of music in 2003 has been near-miraculous. Listening to him play live a year after his return from a 35-year absence was like entering a time warp; he played like he never left, with his Taylor-ian grasp of Ellington's propositions, coupled with a full, rich sound. This double-CD of solo bass and violin is a flash forward to 2009, and a senior bassist in full command of his instrument and concepts of playing. The CDs are uninterrupted documents of Grimes flowing from arco to pizzicato, from bass to violin, with blurs of dense complexity folded into the melodic simplicity of nursery rhymes. It's a stream-of-consciousness that's unmarred by affectation, uncertainty or a lack of clarity, and, yes, it has a story (albeit a long one) to tell, with theme and narrative intact. This is a stunning piece of work! (ILK)