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Howard Prince: Double Take

Trombonist Howard Prince’s new recording takes off immediately with a drum roll and a blast of horns, instantly engaging the listener. With players like John Stubblefield, Claudio Roditi, and Marvin “Smitty” Smith as part of a rotating cast of characters, you know you’re going to get a lot of bang for your buck.

There are some peaceful moments too. Prince’s “Memories” played as a duet with guitarist Dave Moreno is pretty and complex. But more of the tunes are like the funky “The Loop,” or the short and sassy “Double Take” where bassist Bryce Sebastien’s throbbing pizzicato leads us into something sounding like a Latin circus. Guitarist Moreno also wails on a mean rock driven electric guitar in some places, while pianist Jon Davis plays alternately smooth, discordant and boppish. The other players are too numerous to mention, but suffice it to say that there’s a lot of action, both acoustic and electric, with spicy percussive touches seasoning the mix. Prince composed most of the pieces and slides a tasty trombone throughout.

Originally Published