Sunnyside Records (SSC 1031)

Armen Donelian | Piano
Dick Oatts | Soprano & Tenor Saxophones
Barry Danielian | Trumpet & Flügelhorn
Anthony Cox | Bass
Bill Stewart | Drums
Arto Tunçboyaciyan | Percussion

  1. Andorinha (Jobim)

  2. Seasons' Change (Donelian)

  3. Resurrection (Donelian)

  4. Broken Carousel (Donelian)

  5. Dungeons and Dragons (Donelian)

  6. Secrets (Donelian)

  7. Astral Dancer (Donelian)

  8. New Blues (Donelian)

  9. Parting (Donelian) (CD only)


Recorded February, 1988, New York, NY (CD/LP)


Jazz Hot Critics' Poll (France) ** #3 Jazz Album of 1988 **

Beyond the talent for composition demonstrated by this pianist/leader, the spirit of adventure that breathes in this enterprise releases ephemeral currents and raises each theme to the level of epic musicality. Purity of execution, with unfailing inspiration, which seems to inhabit distant remembrances and revives with fervor some imaginary folklore. Raising in turn the most glistening or the most stirring colors that can be created, the jazz attained here hints at even more that it tells. Five stars for the album--and more--for the drummer.

- Francois LaCharme


Cadence (1989)

Pianist/composer Donelian is now fulfilling the promise that critics have been attributing to him for the last several years. On his previous LP (4/87, p. 69), as well as on albums with Rory Stuart (12/83, p. 21) and Billy Harper (5/80, p. 26), Donelian established himself as an inventive pianist, schooled in the refined bop traditions of Bill Evans and Chick Corea. Now he has clearly come of age as a composer, player and leader. Donelian's compositions are characterized by elaborate but compelling lines.

- Krin Gabbard


Jazz Magazine (France) (1989)

After a premier Japanese recording (on Atlas) and a solo album on SunnySide (A Reverie) in 1984, Donelian divulges here--in a quintet or sextet--his Secrets. Superb sound from Dick Oatts on soprano, the discovery of Barry Danielian, rhythmic effectiveness: a true success. Eight selections and liner notes by Donelian on the LP, nine selections without the notes on CD: should we buy both? One sees a terrific future.

- Eric Pingot


Swing Journal (Japan) (1989)

About seven years ago, Donelian released a trio album called Stargazer with Eddie Gomez and Billy Hart on the Atlas label, and also performed two concerts at Koseinenkin Hall as a member of the Billy Harper Quintet in 1979. His classically-trained, tasteful performance was full of jazz feeling. His sidemen for this album are skillful musicians, and except for "Andorinha" by Antonio Carlos Jobim all songs were written by Armen Donelian. Also, his ability as a leader, composer and arranger are well showcased. It is subtle and mature, and it is probably satisfying for him to make an album according to his own vision.

- Shoichi Yui