Zbigniew Namysłowski

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This Polish quartet sounded as good as any comparable unit in the States back in 1964 when they recorded this brilliant album. Altoist Namyslowski sounded something like Phil Woods at the time, albeit with a more sinewy tone and experimental temperament, but although he is clearly the star of the show, the rest of the quartet is right up there with him, playing jazz at the highest level. The challenging, harmonically and rhythmically edgy material is what makes this album special; ‘Piatawka’ is on a distinctly Eastern tip, ‘Despair’ brings to mind both Bunky Green and Eddie Harris, and ‘Tkotkonitkotko’ is the obvious highlight.