Laced with the sounds of Monk, Coltrane, Shorter, and others like them, alone, would make for an interesting instrumental spin. However, add the original experiments of a seasoned debut artist and you have captured the interest of many jazz hungry aficionados.
Such is the case with the debut offering of the Steve Hall Quintet, self released in 2005. Enclosed is a very smooth and cool exhibition of varied sounds that escape from all directions and into the minds of all who choose to accept them. This multi-talented musician has presented a multi-directional jewel case that has caught the interest of the industry.
Very much a journeyman, he still stands firm on his music principles and the quality that he lets escape with his name attached. As one can attest to the sound, arrangements, and composition collectively, they seem to have had a precise and methodical attentiveness associated to them. Hall has presented a crisp and diverse menu as his debut into studio recording, a very fine piece of work.
One cut which has a personality all its own is the blues sound of "Cap’n Jack Blues" as the organ of Hall just accompanies you through the piece. A resonance that seizes the appreciation of the listener and won’t let go. It is a great listen. Also, keep tuned to the string action of Peter Schwimmer whom you may not know but will by the end of this cut.
Solo-coated cut "Steamy Night Shuffle" introduces all the members with their own moment in the spotlight, which I find very inventive in many ways. Instrumentals are about all the sounds and Hall has accomplished that with technique and a crisp cool arrangement in this vehicle. Detect the brass of Richard Watson as he exhibits a smooth intro with an exquisite outro to the strings of Schwimmer that are suitably done.
Hall has been many places on many stages along with his quintet. However, it is due time he stood alone with band in hand. With this self-labeled offering, he has birthed a new dimension in his career and I hope that the next level he takes is even more a compliment to his craft than this fine piece.