BODY AND SOUL finds David Murray working yet again with a Coltrane alumnus, this time the great drummer Rashied Ali. Typical of Murray's early '90s recordings, this is an intensely melodic record that swings with a vengeance.
The title track features vocals and updated lyrics by Taana Running. Only a musician of Murray's caliber could breathe fresh air into such a timeworn standard, and Running's vocals are gorgeous. In an echo of the Rashied Ali-John Coltrane duo record INTERSTELLAR SPACE, Murray and Ali close BODY AND SOUL with a duo performance of "Cuttin' Corners," a tune written by the drummer. Murray's ability to pay tribute to the giants of jazz while remaining true to himself is again displayed here. BODY AND SOUL is an excellent transitional record that shows Murray between his late '80s post-bop period and his predominantly lyrical work of the '90s.
4 Stars - Very Good - ...pushing at the edges of a post-hard bop language...
Down Beat (02/01/1994)