Oliver Nelson "Sound Pieces" (Impulse!, US, 1967) NM/VG++

"Sound Pieces features Oliver Nelson in two very different settings. Although best-known as an altoist and a tenor saxophonist, Nelson sticks exclusively to soprano throughout the set. He leads a 20-piece big band on three of his compositions which, although interesting, are not overly memorable. Best are five other numbers (two of which were originally issued on the record Three Dimensions) that showcase Nelson's soprano playing with a quartet that includes pianist Steve Kuhn, bassist Ron Carter, and drummer Grady Tate. Although one would not think of Nelson as a soprano stylist, his strong playing actually put him near the top of his field on such numbers as "The Shadow of Your Smile," "Straight No Chaser," and his own "Patterns.""

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