In The Empire State (Hard Bop 33010)
The Fishwick twins have been earning themselves a well deserved reputation for several years now and I gave their previous disc When Night Falls a five star review last year (JJ0414). The current disc is even better and was recorded in New York after Steve had played engagements at various clubs in the Big Apple including Smalls and Smoke.
All eight tunes were either written or arranged by various members of the band. Steve himself contributed the opening Jymie, a demanding, fast hard bop opus, and Warne's World dedicated to the late Warne Marsh. Frank Basile on Baritone takes the commanding opening solo on the bouncing My Blue Heaven which also features fine work from pianist Jeb Patton. Basile also impresses on his own original Morse Code. Tenorist Osian Roberts contributed three of the titles including Enid, in waltz time and featuring him and Steve in very impressive style, as does How Deep Is The Ocean. Lullaby For Eira, a thoughtful ballad, was penned by Roberts as a dedication to his daughter.
Throughout the proceedings Steve Fishwick proves himself to be a world-class player but all the front-line participants take first-rate solos at various points in the programme. The rhythm team are far more than just support, enhancing the overall performance in no small measure. Wonderful, feel good, uplifting jazz, not to be missed.