May 1998

Henri Texier
Label Bleu

If the name (and work) of French bassist Henri Texier is as unknown to you as it is to me, read on. Hailing from a country noted more for cool cinema and wine, Texier is deserving of wider jazz recognition. His new recording, the aptly-titled Respect, is one sweet slice of urbane swing. A supple, melodic player, Texier selflessly fronts a crew of veteran warriors (Lee Konitz, Bob Brookmeyer, Steve Swallow, Paul Motian), sharing the spotlight, giving each member plenty of room to breathe and blend. A musical congress of equals, the band seamlessly flows from the languid soulfulness of "Idyll" to the high-spirited bop of "Ladies' Waders" to the album closing wistful waltz of horns that centers "Marcello Mastroianni." Music to chill by.

Originally published in May 1998
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