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Ryan Kisor Quintet: This Is Ryan

Ryan Kisor still lives in New York but has migrated from a Dutch label to a Japanese company. Since The Awakening, his last album for Criss Cross in 2003, he has made six for Videoarts. His Videoarts CDs are hard to find in the U.S., pricey at $29 and, if This Is Ryan is typical, worth the search and the heavy hit.

Fourteen years into his professional career, Kisor is still working in the postbop tributary of the mainstream, still one of the most talented of the young lions who popped up in the 1990s. He brings to the Japanese label most of the sidemen he had on Criss Cross: tenor saxophonist Grant Stewart, pianist Peter Zak and bassist John Webber, with drummer Jason Brown in for Willie Jones III. In addition to a tone of unusual breadth and warmth up and down the range of the trumpet, Kisor brings imagination, daring, humor and storytelling continuity to his solos. His development of ideas is as logical and joyous on a blistering “You and the Night and the Music” as it is on Don Cherry’s wry, reflective “Art Deco” and his own waltz composition “Solitaire.”

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