Any recording consisting of nothing but bass duets is not only challenging to the musicians, but also to the listener. Fortunately, Rufus Reid
and Michael Moore
are two of the best in the business, and their second duo CD is full of memorable music. They not only have each mastered their instruments, but each man intuitively anticipates where his partner is headed and provides the perfect complementary line. Their ability to come up with consistently fascinating and intricate arrangements of standards such as "Sweet Lorraine," "Someone to Watch Over Me," and "Look for the Silver Lining" make the music stand up well to repeated hearings. Their haunting arco lines in Billy Strayhorn
's "Lotus Blossom" and nimble handling of Miles Davis
' "Four" and Sonny Rollins
' "Oleo" should serve as a virtual master class to students interested in becoming jazz bassists. Each of them contributed original compositions as well. Reid
's exotic "Almost But Maybe," which combines an arco bass with pizzicato accompaniment, seems like it would be an interesting vehicle for the Turtle Island String Quartet
's intense "When I Wage Battle, Next" contrasts with his humorous blues "Chili Dogs at Midnight." This CD is best heard in a quiet setting to avoid missing a single lick.