- Released: September 13, 1994
- Label: Warner Bros / WEA
Entertainment Weekly - 9/30/94, p.60
"...Redman finds ingenious ways of creating a mode of acoustic jazz that is both entertaining and enlightening....MOODSWING plays like an artistic journey..." - Rating: A-
Q - 12/94, p.1424 Stars
- Excellent - "...Its eclectic collection of 11 originals represents an extended palette after the previous, much-hyped WISH....Will do his enviable reputation no harm at all..."
JazzTimes - 12/94, p.116
"...variety within a unifying compositional style and a balance of harmonic interest and harmonic openness that neither chains soloists...nor leaves them wallowing....Meticulous musicianship..."
Vibe - 9/94, p.121
"...This collection of original compositions is not perfect, but it's strong, and surely a sign that he can become all that the hype contends..."
- 1.Sweet Sorrow
- 5.Alone in the Morning
- 8.Oneness of Two, The (In Three)
- 9.Past in the Present
- 11.Headin' Home
Joshua Redman Quartet: Joshua Redman (tenor & soprano saxophone); Brad Mehldau (piano); Christian McBride (acoustic bass); Brian Blade (drums).
Recorded at Power Station, New York on March 8-10, 1994. Includes liner notes by Joshua Redman.
Personnel: Joshua Redman (saxophone, alto saxophone); Brad Mehldau (piano); Brian Blade (drums).
Audio Mixer: James Farber.
Liner Note Author: Joshua Redman.
Recording information: Power Station, New York, NY (03/08/1994-03/10/1994).
Photographers: Marc Hom; Jim Merrill.
Unknown Contributor Role: Christian McBride.
Saxophonist Joshua Redman's third album as a leader is cause for celebration, because here's a young jazzman gifted with all manner of technical gifts, yet he places a premium on feeling and communication. MOODSWING is just that, a series of changes, alternating between the cool and the hot--each arrangement depicting some aspect of Redman's wide-ranging musical personality.
So it comes to pass that a long jump tune such as "Rejoice" (the centerpiece of MOODSWING) celebrates the gospel aspects of jazz in the tried and true manner of the original Jazz Messengers, even as a low-key "Faith" derives its inspiration from quieter forms of devotion, while "Dialogue" manages to combine both as Redman expounds on a quiet Aylerish hymn with escalating intensity.
As with his previous recordings, listeners are left with the sense that young Joshua Redman is mature beyond his years. On a cool, swinging minor blues vamp such as "Chill," the ease with which he manipulates the timbres of his saxophone recall old-time tenor kings from the swing era. And yet, Redman is very much the contemporary thinker, as his funky closing tune "Headin' Home" illustrates. Whether playing R&B or hard bop, ballads or swing, blues or latin, it's the total conviction Joshua Redman brings to every note that makes MOODSWING a joy.