A Young Lion of hard bop in the 1950's, altoist Jackie McLean became one of the most forward-thinking of the veterans in the 1960s. His sharp sound, passionate tone and advanced ideas combined with a strong musical curiosity that led him to explore freer sounds. One Step Beyond (1963) is one of his greatest triumphs on record.
Inspired by Ornette Coleman and John Coltrane but playing very much in his own emotional style, McLean excels while interacting with the younger musicians on this remarkable set. Vibraphonist Bobby Hutcherson makes a piano redundant, Tony Williams shows that he was already strikingly original at this early stage. Trombonist Grachan Moncur III matches McLean's passion. Especially on "Frankenstein" and "Ghost Town," McLean creates otherworldly music that still sounds powerful and provocative nearly 50 years later.
Like all Music Matters Jazz releases, this audiophile vinyl reissue is mastered from the original analog tape and pressed on 180g virgin vinyl at RTI in Camarillo, CA. The highest quality gatefold cover features original session photography on the inside. See more Jackie McLean records here