How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.
As there are no liner notes accompanying April in Täby, one is given no information about Jerker Lindström aside from a single photograph of him conducting the well–scrubbed Swedish Radio Jazz Group, in which he appears to be a teen–ager. If that’s true Lindström must also be a prodigy, as he wrote and arranged every number on the album and offers a warm–blooded tenor solo on “Aska.” But a more logical assumption is that he simply looks quite young for his age, whatever that may be, as it is hard to envision anyone in his teens having written music this sophisticated and demanding (excepting, of course, Mozart). The five instrumentals, woven together in the manner of a suite, are sandwiched around four vocals, two by Linda Pettersson (“Humble Embracement,” the grooving “Blå Boulevard”), one by Rigmor Gustafsson (“Mylla”) and another (“Alfred”) by Pettersson and Gustafsson. The lyrics to Pettersson’s numbers are provided in the album insert, but alas, in Swedish. The melodies, however, are lovely, and Pettersson and Gustafsson are talented singers with clear and charming voices. The vocals are preceded by the Astor Piazzolla–influenced “Tango Cantabile” and smoking “Storbandtrubbel,” and followed by “Aska,” the assertively swinging “Glöd” and sultry Latin–framed finale, “Eld.” Soloists, in addition to Lindström, are tenors Fredrik Ljungkvist (“Tango Cantabile”) and Karl–Martin Almkvist (“Storbandtrubbel”), pianist Torbjörn Gulz (“Alfred,” “Mylla”), Almkvist and trombonist Per Christensen (“Blå Boulevard”), bass clarinetist Per “Texas” Johansson and trumpeter Magnus Broo (“Glöd”), alto saxophonist Robert Nordmark (“Eld”). Whatever his age, Lindström is a notably sharp and resourceful big–band writer / arranger, and the Swedish Radio Jazz Group takes his sometimes murky charts and makes them sparkle.