We gave it a B+
Tchicai (pronounced CHEE-khigh), a Danish saxophonist, is warmly remembered for his work with the New York Contemporary Five and the New York Art Quartet in the mid-’60s. Yet after returning to Copenhagen in 1966, he was rarely heard here, live or on records. This quartet session, recorded in 1984, provides a welcome opportunity to catch up with an accomplished maverick. Tchicai has switched from alto to tenor sax (except for three unaccompanied solos), and his tone has become rugged, his phrasing more aggressive. A laconic, unpredictable player, he boldly struts over stirring vamps played by a rhythm section consisting of drums and two basses; on the old movie theme ”Stella by Starlight,” he reveals a surprising gift for conventional, lyrical improvisation.