Rating: NNNBringing a handful of heavyweight players like saxophonists Jane Bunnett and Dewey Redman and pianist Stanley Cowell together for.
Bringing a handful of heavyweight players like saxophonists Jane Bunnett and Dewey Redman and pianist Stanley Cowell together for a leaderless, cooperative session might sound like a good idea, but the tendency is for egos to get in the way and for someone to take control. What’s so impressive about Spirituals & Dedications is that the principal players, joined by booming vocalist Dean Bowman, trumpeter Larry Cramer, bassist Kieran Overs and drummer Mark McLean, work together well as a group. Performing standards like Nobody Knows and Sometimes I Feel Like A Motherless Child alongside tunes by Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Cowell and a Cuba-free Bunnett, everyone seems to relax and blend in with what’s going on around them rather than pushing for the spotlight with extroverted solos. Not a particularly flashy record, it sacrifices originality for comfort.