Bennie Green - "Bennie Green"
Time Records (1960)
It's an easy going affair, but one that swings it's butt off; with clever arranging that keeps it interesting. In every way, Green & Forest sound absolutely fantastic together. The blowing is relaxed but heartfelt, with each occasionally digging in to take things up a notch. As already mentioned, the rhythm section is a locomotive. The groove is nearly hypnotic, once they start rollin' it gets very difficult to pull yourself away from the music. Sonny Clark is in primo form, as well.
Highlights are an unusually bright and fun "Solitude", "Sonny's Crip" - a fine blues with "So What" responses & a bridge, and a simmering rendering of "Cool Struttin'". The opener "Sometimes I'm Happy" is a little on the cute side, but still has the irrestible groove that pervades the entire session. The sound quality is dandy, clear yet lush, and the bongos are not too high in the mix. It won't blow your mind, but it is very enjoyable jazz; perfect for unwinding after a busy day. Please note that this particular release is only available in mp3 format. The price is right! 4 out of 5.