Picks and Pans Review: Special Edition
Since establishing his drumming credentials in the '60s and early 70s bands of Bill Evans, Charles Lloyd and Miles Davis, DeJohnette has led his own expeditionary groups in nonelectronic jazz combining avant-garde freedom with elements of swing and bebop. Special Edition is a formidable combo, featuring bassist-cellist Peter Warren and the prodigious reed men David Murray and Arthur Blythe. While DeJohnette's compositional ideas pall on Zoot Suite, his pretty arrangement of John Coltrane's Central Park West is a touching tribute to the master. Journey to the Twin Planet—the most successful cut—is daring without being gimmicky. DeJohnette lightly whips his own solos into a rhythmic soufflé which he serves in self-effacingly small portions.