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Lee Konitz: Another Shade of Blue

Collectors of Lee Konitz who have heard Blue Note’s Alone Together and wanted more music from that 1996 Jazz Bakery meeting with pianist Brad Mehldau and bassist Charlie Haden will probably be pleased with this release. With five more extended improvisations from that performance, Lee continues to remind us of the beauty of his sound and the flowing nature of his lyrical sense, but there is a problem that becomes more evident as time goes on. After the slow, spun-out themeless blues that is the title tune, we hear the equally reflective “Everything Happens to Me,” on which Lee shows more attention to the original melody than he was wont to do in the past. Even slower, Lee’s 16-minute performance of “What’s New?” answers the titular question with broadly shaped harmonic reinvestigations and scores of melodic twists, all of which are sympathetically supported by Brad and Charlie.

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