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Bill Evans & Jim Hall - Undercurrent LP



In 1962, legendary jazz pianist Bill Evans collaborated for the first time on record with jazz guitarist Jim Hall to create the landmark album Undercurrent. And even though it is a two-person improvisational affair, it is almost unfathomable that these two giants alone fill up all the grooves on this record. The thoughtful interplay between these two musicians created such a beautiful, lush, and emotional journey that their work influenced many. At the time of this recording, Bill Evans was one of the top jazz pianists (his performance with Miles Davis on Kind Of Blue is still a high-water mark), but he had stopped performing and recording after the death of his peer, bassist Scott LaFaro. Eventually, he was persuaded to return to music, and this was one of the first recordings upon his return. Guitarist Jim Hall - who had worked with Ella Fitzgerald, Sonny Rollins, and Chico Hamilton - started his partnership with Evans during this time. Recorded over two sessions in April and May 1962, the two have that beautifully unspoken musical language of give and take; their recordings are refreshingly busy but also incredibly sparse. These two giants understand that intertwining their personalities and harmonic styles could create greatness. This notable re-issue is an all-analog production affair—AAA Mastered and cut live by audio guru Kevin Gray (Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Charles Mingus)—and it’s never sounded better. So dim the lights and let this music breathe with you; it’s an incredible listen and an essential album for both the novice listener wanting to dip their toe into the genre or the audiophile who needs to replace their well-worn vinyl copy. And depending on your day, it will color your mood in any emotive shade you desire.

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