Dave Brubeck Quartet - Take Five (Paul Desmond)
From the album "Time Out" (1959)
Label: Columbia Legacy
Dave Brubeck's website.
Dave Brubeck Quartet
When it was recorded in 1959, Columbia Jazz was less than enthusiastic about "Time Out", the album from which "Take Five" on the DALI CD Vol. 2 was selected. It had nothing to do with the artists or the quality of their performance. The "problem" was the compositions. Almost none of the seven tracks were in the - at the time - nearly mandatory 4/4 meter. Columbia was simply afraid that all the "strange" meters would make the LP too uncommercial. They were proven wrong.
"Basically", Brubeck later described, ""Time Out" was just an experiment in odd rhythms". Paul Desmond, the composer, said that "Take Five" was just supposed to be a "drum solo" on the album. Instead, Desmond and Brubeck scored a gigantic hit record and the album became one of the most well known jazz albums of all times.
The track was recorded July 1959, and, apart from the odd 5/4 meter, sounds like many jazz recordings from that age. Drums on the left, piano to the right, bass and alto saxophone in the middle, not even in extreme ping-pong stereo. Recorded in a traditional fashion with reverb to spare, even though the piano was recorded almost "dry". The resulting sound is very brilliant, with lots of space, warmth, and depth. Desmond's alto saxophone is beautifully captured, and the same goes for the extended drum solo. Great dynamics and beautiful imaging is the general impression.
A performance of "Time Out" from 1961. The Dave Brubeck Quartet are: Dave Brubeck, Paul Desmond, Joe Morello, and Gene Wright: