Chicago-based saxophonist Shawn Maxwell released a dynamic four-track album, Story at Eleven. Maxwell’s four-movement work, his eleventh release, has a feel and enthusiasm which is infectious. Composed by Maxwell, who reproduced the album with Nick Eipers, Maxwell’s focus for the album was to create four distinct points of view for each epic track. His band, which features Collin Clauson on electric piano and organ, Michael Barton on bass, and Greg Essing on drums, compliments Maxwell’s bold arrangements and powerful alto sax sound. “Appointment With…” starts the flight with its pensive Fender Rhodes and melodic alto sax and bass interplay. Over the next ten minutes, the intensity and tension build. Reaching “Answer & Arrival” at the album’s end, the listener has been guided on a wonderous long-form journey with daring time signature changes and equally evocative solos. It’s evident that there has been some sort of transformation during this 40-minute ride. Perhaps repeated listening will uncover the details of the joyous ride.

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