Phil Farris: Sun Sound

Farris and company (pianist David Ake, bassist Bill Markus and drummer Giovanni Nickens), recorded live at Billy Higgins’ World Stage club in L.A., have a powerful spiritual approach reminiscent of the classic Coltrane Quartet and Billy Harper’s quintet. On the opening “Softly, As in a Morning Sunrise” the leader’s tenor is full of sweeping runs, long held notes, rising half-step phrases and raw-edged tones. Nickens burns Elvin Jones-style behind him. This is how the album goes, although there are peaceful moments, too, such as Ake’s solo on “Blue in Green” and Farris’ composition, “Sea of Sand.”