“This is pure listening pleasure. Craig Buhler has a real ear for fascinating melodies, and the variety of styles shows off his arranging skills, not to mention his mastery of single reeds. He has assembled a first-rate ensemble here to bring his charts alive.
Pianist Dave Witham creates a fine sonic environment … His interludes in “Madrid Session” are simply beautiful.
There cannot be many players at the level of Brian Atkinson on both trumpet and vibes. He and Buhler do tasty duets on both “Madrid Session” and “Harbor Cafe Blues.”
The opening number, “Lookear,” makes me want to sing along, so I will have to create a vocalise for it. Everyone has great solos, and there is a particularly fun trading fours sequence between drummer Paul Kreibich and bassist Joel Hamilton.
This is one of those CDs that, as I play it, I wish I had been in the studio with these guys.”