Album Review of
Hidden Treasures, Volume One: Monday Nights

Written by Joe Ross
January 8, 2019 - 12:00am EST
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Noted arranger and bandleader Gil Evans passed away in 1988, but his son (and trumpet player) Miles Evans is keeping The Gil Evans Orchestra going strong. “Monday Nights” is the orchestra’s first studio recording in over forty years. We hear some of Gil’s progressive originals ("Moonstruck" and "Eleven"), as well as his arrangement of Masabumi Kikuchi’s “Lunar Eclipse.” The album’s subtitle brings to mind the well-received weekly concerts the orchestra presented from 1983 - 1994 at Greenwich Village nightspot, Sweet Basil. Gil Evans was noted for his inventive use of the voices of his masterful sidemen. Keeping with this format, the current band frequently calls upon the likes of John Clark’s French horn, Shunzo Ohno’s trumpet, Miles Evans’ trumpet, Dave Bargeron’s trombone, Paul Shaffer’s electric piano, Alex Foster’s tenor sax, Dave Taylor’s bass trombone and Gil Goldstein’s piano ("Lunar Eclipse"). Tracks like “LL Funk,” “Groove from the Louvre,” and “Lunar Eclipse” give the sidemen plenty of opportunities for explosive and emotional statements. The provocative orchestrations have elements of post-bop, rock and fusion. “Monday Nights” is a compelling set of progressive big band music.  (Joe Ross, Roots Music Report)