Westward Bound!
Review by Willard Manus

Harold Land, one of the unsung heroes of the tenor sax, spent much of the 1960s at The Penthouse jazz club in Seattle, where he led the house band. Once a week KING-FM carried live broadcasts from the club. Now Resonance Records has remastered some of those broadcasts and released them in a provocative new album, WESTWARD BOUND!

Land, who was born in 1928 and raised in San Diego, quickly showed prowess on the tenor sax. While in his early 20s, he was tapped by Clifford Brown and Max Roach to join their band. He later collaborated with many other jazz greats, including Bobby Hutcherson, Gerald Wilson and Wes Montgomery. When it came to playing straight-ahead, hard-bop jazz, Land was a master.

On WESTWARD BOUND! Land, joined by such titans as trumpeter Carmell Jones, pianist Hampton Hawes and drummer Philly Joe Jones, leads the way on nine tunes, some of which he wrote, others of which are standards (“My Romance,” “Autumn Leaves”). In each case he plays with fire and finesse, inspiring his colleagues to do the same. The result is an album that sizzles from beginning to end.

(Resonance Records)