This set combines two of Sonny Rollins' LPs for Impulse Records, There Will Never Be Another You and On Impulse!, both of which were originally issued in 1965. There Will Never Be Another You featured the saxophonist playing a live set (in the rain, apparently) with pianist Tommy Flanagan, bassist Bob Cranshaw, and Billy Higgins and Mickey Roker on drums. Rollins is in fine form, playing standards including a nearly 17-minute version of the title tune. He wanders off the microphone frequently, though, which is a problem, and it makes this otherwise very nice set less than essential.
"(We Should Be) Lovers" commences with some fine musicianship and female vocals underpinned by a scratchy, funky guitar, slap bass and keys, Rick himself reverberates soulfully and snugly inbetween the grooves. It is when he really glides over the melody and is joined by brass and strings that the track really comes alive. A fantastic start, then, and proceeded by a sweet ballad featuring a duet with Sandi Humphreys. Slow to start, but slowly building into a memorable tune, "I’ve Got To Be With You" is indeed a highlight of this album. Sandi is a lovely vocalist and her phrasing against the strings and female backing singers really works a treat.
An incredible tribute to German pianist Jutta Hipp – one of the few female players in the postwar European jazz scene, and one of the few who managed to make a splash on this side of the Atlantic too! Jutta's best known to American audiences for a handful of records she cut for Blue Note – and this set takes those records, and moves way way past them – to including a huge range of material that really opens up our understanding of Hipp's music in her all-too-short career! The CDs feature early German recordings – in a number of sessions with small groups that include a quintet with Emil Mangelsdorff on alto and Joki Freeund on tenor, a number of performances in the New Jazz Stars group of tenorist Hans Koller, work in a quintet with Attila Zoller on guitar, another sextet with Albert Mangelsdorff on trombone, and a group co-led with baritone saxoponist Lars Gullin.
On Be Yourself Tonight, Eurythmics' most commercially successful and hit-laden album, the duo meticulously blended the new wave electronic elements that dominated their previous sets with the harder straight-edged rock and soul that would dominate later sets to come up with a near-perfect pop album. This disc scored no less than four hit singles and kept them a mainstay on MTV's play lists during the channel's heyday. Fusing pop, soul, rock, electronic beats, and even gospel, this is arguably the duo's finest moment. The first hit, "Would I Lie to You," is a straight-forward rocker, complete with great guitar licks, a soulful horn section, and Annie Lennox sounding as vicious and vivacious as ever. The second single, which was a huge chart topper in Europe, "There Must Be an Angel," is nothing short of shimmering beauty, with Lennox providing truly angelic vocals and Stevie Wonder lending an enchanting harmonica solo.