"Horace Silver & the Jazz Messengers" drifted briefly out-of-print over the past couple of years, but now makes a permanent return to the Blue Note catalog with this remastered RVG reissue. For those confused by the title and thinking -- "Isn't it supposed to be Art Blakey & the Jazz Messengers?" -- don't be alarmed. The Messengers began as a collective group and this album actually pre-dates the JM albums under Blakey's leadership. Regardless, this classic jazz album was recorded over two sessions -- December 13, 1954 and February 6, 1955. The lineup is the same that would reappear in a few short months on the "Cafe Bohemia" recordings (see my review of Vol. 2) -- Kenny Dorham, Hank Mobley, Doug Watkins and of course Silver and Blakey. The eight original Silver compositions are classic hard bop, and many of them are regarded as standards today, "The Preacher" and "Doodlin'" foremost among them. Simply put, this Silver is pure gold.