This album is a swingin' romp through 11 great standards which includes five swingers, three exciting Latin-jazz numbers, and three haunting ballads all played with passion, drive and precision by this outstanding big band.
From raunchy, driving rock to lush Gil Evans-like colors; from infectious swing to haunting ballads; and from impish humor to fluid latin rhythms, this cd will give you the ultimate in jazz big band pleasure.
JANUARY 2006 Review byFritz the Nite Owl Jazz Smooth Jazz WJZA 103.5FM/104.3FM Sunday 9pm to 12 Midnight, Columbus, Ohio USA
Ladd McIntosh Big Band: Temptation
However, if it is the dynamic, pulsating, foot-stompin’, finger-snappin’, danceable sound of a real 18-piece big band for the 21st Century you’re cravin’, this is the CD for you!
Ladd McIntosh, a formidable force on the local jazz scene in the mid-to-late-sixties, is a graduate of the Ohio State University School of Music. While there, he was the leader of the OSU Jazz Ensemble and led that group to numerous national and international collegiate jazz band awards. Teaching, movie scores, and uncountable playing, arranging, and leading gigs on the West Coast followed his departure from the Central Ohio music scene.
His bio, credits, and CDs, available for sale, can be found on the Internet link listed above.
On this set, Ladd and his troops roar their way through an 11-song collection of great American standards. Spectacular McIntosh Arrangements and ensemble work, combined with outstanding solos on all instruments, make this a collection that ranks with the very best big band albums you’ve ever heard.
Review by John Killoch, Mainly Big Bands, England... 11/04
Ladd McIntosh is a man with tremendous enthusiasm and imagination. He has a predilection to surprise the audience with delicious flights of fancy. Ladd has his arrangements published via Walrus Music. Musical directors should look beyond the odd titles he applies to his arrangements, they are no indication of any ultra-contemporary element, He shines with his latin style arrangements, his rock oriented music is lethal and no-one swings like he does. Add to all this his penchant for adding an unexpected colour every now and then, and there is interest and excitement for all. The titles reflect his humour and not any negative ingredient in the music.
After too long away he explodes within the big band firmament by producing two stunning albums, one featuring standards and the other some sparkling original music, all arranged by him and performed by an outstanding team, many of whom were on the original recordings.
TEMPTATION:Looking at the track titles on this outstanding compact disc, you might just be tempted to get out your dancing slippers and roll back the carpet BIG MISTAKE - HUGE!!!! A quote from PRETTY WOMAN but apt. I'M GLAD THERE IS YOU kicks the door in John Wayne style and challenges you to ignore it. This arrangement by accident or design may have you checking the sleeve notes to see if you have in fact picked up the Clark/Boland Big Band CD. The saxophone section writing is gorgeous and the arrangement builds and builds to an exceptional level of excitement, never losing sight of the composer's original intention. This atmosphere continues throughout the CD, so many highlights including the title track TEMPTATION. Again , by accident or design, this for me is an arrangement that would not have looked out of place in the Kenton library. Sal Cracciolo's trumpet is supreme and the pugnacious response from Eric Jorgensen's trombone is spectacular .
RIDE THE NIGHT BEAST: One could say that this is the return of the Ladd McIntosh of old. Well sort of true! The sound is fatter, there is a gorgeous 'devil may care' arrogance in the writing. What remains is the will to rock you out of your chair or swing you into some gorgeous oblivion. The latin flavoured arrangements have an authority that few can match. In short the title track is frighteningly apt.
There seems to be no reason at all why these arrangements should not be published. Only one appears in the Walrus catalogue as I write 'RUGGED COAST'. I would hope that others appear eventually. Sadly the music on the first disc is 100% standard material and as such it seems unlikely that they will become generally available.
As a postscript I must mention the brilliant drumming of Dick Weller, his short breaks and fills give an extra impetus to this performance. The ideal drummer for the occasion.