2 LP set
This reissue of MoodSwing is Joshua Redmans third recording as a band leader and his first featuring all-original compositions. The young saxophonist sought to change what he believed to be the public perception of jazz a largely academic and overly intellectualized form of music devoid of the emotional themes that drive many other genres. As he explains in the original liner notes, jazz was seen as, "an elite art form, reserved for a sophisticated intelligentsia who rendezvous in secret." With MoodSwing, Redman makes the case that jazz can be an accessible musical medium that could evoke basic and visceral emotional reactions.
From the playfully coy "Chill" to the urgent energy of "Rejoice," Redman offers up a communicative and inspired record of emotional diversity. Joining him in this task was a young band of his peers, all of whom have since become established and esteemed figures in jazz. MoodSwing was one of the first exposures the jazz community had to young pianist Brad Mehldau, then beginning his career in Redmans quartet. Mehldau anchors these compositions behind Redmans lyrical playing, occasionally stepping out front to show his talents in "The Oneness of Two (In Three)" and "Past in the Present." The bands rhythm section has since been recognized as one of jazzs best, with Christian McBride on bass, and then-little-known Brian Blade on the drums.
As the follow-up to his breakout "Wish", "MoodSwing" has been universally praised by critics and enjoyed commercial success, selling over 300,000 units worldwide. Entertainment Weekly wrote, "saxist Redman finds ingenious ways of creating a mode of acoustic jazz that is both entertaining and enlightening." This record continues to provide a cornerstone for Redmans current career; many of these compositions are still featured in the saxophonists live sets today.
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