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David Sills: Hangin’ Fire

Tenor watchers may never let young David Sills forget his dreary and lackluster unaccompanied reading of “In A Sentimental Mood” at the end of an otherwise respectable debut CD-better it was not included. Even his quartet performance of “Chelsea Bridge” could have stood a bit of whimsy. But for most other tunes, including three originals, he’s more convincing. Getzian, too, exhibited in unlikely settings like Kenny Barron’s blistering “Voyage” and Tristano’s sinuous “Ablution.” Frank Rosalino’s “Blue Daniel” and Miles’ “Vierd Blues” find him at a pedestrian gait. The reliable Sherman Ferguson spurs the rhythm section of bassist Tom Warrington and RM hopeful, pianist Cecelia Coleman; altoist Gary Foster appears on three selections. Sills’ own tunes are hard-loop, even if his 5/4 title piece doesn’t fit the strict mold. But “Ecstatic Static” should convince skeptics of his compositional potential.

Originally Published