Other than four titles from 1949, this CD reissue has tenor saxophonist Harold Land's first sessions as a leader. Teamed up on the West Coast with trumpeter Rolf Ericson, pianist Carl Perkins, bassist Leroy Vinnegar, and drummer Frank Butler, Land shows that hard bop was very much alive in Los Angeles in the late '50s.
His tone is cooler and softer than it would become later on, but it was already pretty distinctive. Land performs three of his swinging originals, the original version of Perkins' "Grooveyard" (which became a minor standard), an obscurity by Elmo Hope, and the standards "Speak Low" and "You Don't Know What Love Is." The reissue also adds "Promised Land" to the original program. Fine straight-ahead music.
AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow
|Brand||OJC / Contemporary Records|
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