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Continued improvement

By Joshua Redman

Warner Bros.: 1994

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This review first appeared in the October 7, 1994 issue of the North County Blade-Citizen (now North County Times).

Not only is young saxophone phenom Joshua Redman a prodigous player, but it turns out he is also prolific. It's not yet been two years since his debut was released; since then have come "Wish" and now "MoodSwing."

His third CD shows that he is growing as a composer. His songs generally feature clean, lilting melodies that lend themselves to extensive improvisation and imaginative harmonizing. "Chill," with its catchy lead, could well become a standard.

And Redman's playing remains a delight. His tone on tenor sax is big, fat and sweet, and his solos are thoughtful and passionate – a worthy successor to Lester Young and Coleman Hawkins as a master of the tenor (if nowhere near the innovator they were). Redman is one of the best young jazz artists of a new generation, and his continued, rapid growth promises better things yet to come.