Blood & Champagne CD Review
May 2011 By Martin Bright (Ukjazzradio.com)
Having seen Tommaso Starace live recently, I can thoroughly recommend him as bright toned altoist, best described as a latter day Phil Woods. This immaculately produced cd serves him well & has no weak tracks. Best tracks are probably " Tunnel della Liberta" & "Blood & Champagne" both written by Starace, Billy Strayhorn's "Johnny Come Lately" is taken at a brisk trot on soprano sax, & is a cheery contrast to Steve Lacy's familiar, more astringent, version As I'm a reviewer rather than a publicist, I'd better put in one small grouch. Lawrence Cottle's electric bass is facile, but I think a double bass would have given a richer sound to a cd which is, obviously, tonally light. since Starace plays soprano as well as alto. Mention must be made of Frank Harrison's keyboard work, which is crisp & inventive.