More Donald Byrd
- Black Byrd finally arrives on the site with solid Double Plus (A++) sound throughout
- This vintage Blue Note pressing is Tubey Magical, lively and clear, with three-dimensionality that will fill your listening room from wall to wall
- 5 stars: “Never before had a jazz musician embraced the celebratory sound and style of contemporary funk as fully as Byrd did here — not even Davis, whose dark, chaotic jungle-funk stood in sharp contrast to the bright, breezy, danceable music on Black Byrd. Byrd gives free rein to producer/arranger/composer Larry Mizell, who crafts a series of tightly focused, melodic pieces often indebted to the lengthier orchestrations of Isaac Hayes and Curtis Mayfield.”
We played a bunch of these recently and only a few had the kind of sound we were looking for. This one was one of the best we heard — big, bold and lively with excellent presence. The bottom end is meaty and punchy, the highs are sweet and extended, and the mids sound tonally right on the money. Most copies didn’t jump out of the speakers the way this one does. You’ll have a hard time finding such rich, smooth sound for this wonderful jazz album.
Some of these later pressings are just plain weak, but every now and then you find one like this that clearly benefits from the use of modern cutting equipment. The bass is tighter, the drums have more snap, and the soundfield has real depth. There’s excellent energy and good presence throughout.