The final recording by Gary Burton's classic quartet (how about a reunion someday?) features the vibraphonist/leader, guitarist Larry Coryell, bassist Steve Swallow and drummer Bob Moses mixing together aspects of rock, country and folk music in their advanced improvisations. The material (by Mike Gibbs, Burton, Coryell and Bob Dylan) is quite strong, and there are some hints of the avant-garde (including "One, Two, 1-2-3-4" and Burton's freely improvised solo piece "Dreams"). All of the influential Burton-Coryell recordings (among the earliest fusion records) are currently difficult to find and are deserving reissue as a box set.
Talk about all-star groups – this quintet date matches together vibraphonist Gary Burton with pianist Chick Corea, guitarist Pat Metheny, bassist Dave Holland, and drummer Roy Haynes. Burton and Corea have recorded frequently through the years, while Metheny gained some early fame working with Burton; Holland was with Corea in Miles Davis' late-'60s group, and Haynes was formerly with both Burton and Corea. However, not all of these musicians had played together before – Corea had never worked with Metheny previously, nor Burton with Holland. No matter, the masterful players fit together quite well.
The Lyric Suite for Sextet joins the unparalleled duo of Chick Corea and Gary Burton with string quartet for a combination soon to be repeated with the release of Hot House. Through an erratic and sometimes disjointed hall of mirrors, it explores a series of never quite fully formed ideas. The opening notes of this then unique collaboration create a thriving and exuberant sound that permeates every moment that follows. Burton’s liquid runs, especially in “Waltz” and in “Dreams,” bring forth all the music’s chambered revelry as Corea weaves nimbly through every sprung carnation left in his footfall. From the brief yet enthralling “Rollercoaster” to the ebullient “Finale,” feelings sweep us away, and are swept away by, their own intensity.
The Danny Elfman & Tim Burton 25th Anniversary Music Box,' a very special box set that features expansions of the 13 original scores that Elfman has composed for Burton's iconic films. This is a newly-produced library of 16 CDs each packaged with artwork by Burton, adding up to more than 19 hours of music, including 7 hours of previously-unreleased Masters, demos, work tapes and other rarities.
Gary Burton’s Passengers has it all: its frontman’s incomparable mallets, Dan Gottlieb keeping the beat, the unmistakable bass of Eberhard Weber paired with the equally unique stylings of Steve Swallow, the fluid fingers of guitarist Pat Metheny (who would soon go on to front his own super group with Weber and Gottlieb), and the all-important bow of ECM’s attentive production. Not enough to whet your appetite? All the more reason to buy it.
Gary Burton has had many stellar moments over the years, and in the 1990s, one of his finest achievements was Astor Piazzolla Reunion, a heartfelt tribute to the late Argentinean tango innovator and bandoneon master. Having toured and recorded with Piazzolla in the 1980s, Burton clearly had a strong appreciation of his legacy, and that appreciation comes through in a major way on arrangements of "Tanguedia," "Romance Del Diablo," and other gems by Piazzolla (whose risk-taking approach to tango generated as much controversy in tango circles as Charlie Parker, Ornette Coleman, and John Coltrane did in jazz). But as passionately as Burton expresses his love of Piazzolla's distinctive music, the vibist's own identity doesn't become buried or obscured.
Guitarist Pat Metheny was a member of the Gary Burton Quartet/Quintet during 1974-1976. In 1989, after becoming a major star, he had a reunion with the vibraphonist that resulted in this excellent project. Performing laid-back and often introspective pieces by Polo Ortin, Vince Mendoza, Paul Meyers, keyboardist Mitchel Forman, and Metheny, the two principals swing lightly in a quintet with Forman, bassist Will Lee, and drummer Peter Erskine. Although Burton had to adjust himself a little due to his former sideman's prominence, the combination of vibes and guitar works quite well. The individual songs are not all that memorable but the group sound is quite attractive and Burton sounds inspired by Metheny.