Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

416

Jacob Young: Evening Falls

John Kelman By

Sign in to view read count
While guitarist Jacob Young has been on the Norwegian circuit for ten years, releasing three albums under his own name as well as a beautiful duet record with singer Karin Krog, Evening Falls is his first to receive widespread exposure. And that's a good thing as Young, in those ten years, has developed, much like piano counterpart Tord Gustavsen, into a singular artist who manages to blend a more ethnic Scandinavian approach with a clear respect for the American tradition. But whereas Gustavsen's sound owes much to New Orleans and the gospel tradition, Young comes from the more subdued and restrained approach of Jim Hall, with whom which he studied at New York's New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music.

Young manages to blend an understanding of playing changes with an almost naive folk song-like simplicity. "Blue," which opens the album, is based around a simple chorus that sounds how Pat Metheny might have, had he grown up in Norway instead of the American Midwest. Young's choice of acoustic guitar for this and nearly half the programme of nine originals, lends to the ethnic leaning of the record, although his harmonic choices are often blended with more advanced harmonic ideas. And his solos, whether on acoustic or electric, are clearly informed by ideas he developed in study with artists including John Abercrombie, Richie Beirach and Kenny Werner. His playing is defined by a strong lyricism and understanding of the importance of space, two characteristics that are common denominators with all his educators. But by melding these qualities with a certain Norwegian roots element, he has created a sound that, again like Gustavsen, sounds refreshingly new while, at the same time, oddly familiar.

Evening Falls is also notable as the first ECM recording featuring drummer Jon Christensen since the '99 sessions that resulted in Bobo Stenson's Serenity . While Young's approach is less free, motivating Christensen to work more within a defined yet still elastic rhythmic framework, his playing is as subtle as ever. His playing on the rubato tone poem "Minor Peace" is filled with implication, but never resolves into the obvious.

The other members of Young's quintet, which has been together for two years, are bass clarinetist Vidar Johansen, trumpeter Mathias Eick, whose melancholy melodicism harkens to Kenny Wheeler while displaying a charming simplicity, and bassist Mats Eilertsen, known to ECM fans as the bassist for saxophonist Iain Ballamy's Anglo-Norwegian free group, Food. Johansen shines, even as his style places him more in a support role, through the intuitive counterpoint he provides to both Young's and Eick's more overt explorations. Eilertsen proves himself to be a strong player with a tender side that he examines on the subtle tango rhythm of "Sky."

Like Gustavsen's Changing Places , Evening Falls heralds the international arrival of an artist who, with a number of years behind him, has already developed a mature and personal approach. As a player, composer and bandleader he will clearly be someone to watch.

Track Listing: Blue; Evening Air; Minor Peace; Looking for Jon; Sky; Presence of Descant; Formerly; The Promise; Falling.

Personnel: Jacob Young: guitars; Mathias Eick: trumpet; Vidar Johansen: bass clarinet, tenor saxophone (6); Mats Eilertsen: double-bass; Jon Christensen: drums.

Title: Evening Falls | Year Released: 2004 | Record Label: ECM Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and you'll support us in the process. Learn how.

Extended Analysis
Album Reviews
Interviews
Album Reviews
Read more articles
Anthem

Anthem

PVY Records Corp.
2011

buy
Sideways

Sideways

ECM Records
2008

buy
 

Sideways

Curling Legs
2007

buy
Evening Falls

Evening Falls

ECM Records
2004

buy
 

Glow

Curling Legs
2001

buy

Related Articles

Read Our Story Album Reviews
Our Story
By Troy Dostert
March 25, 2019
Read Influences Album Reviews
Influences
By Don Phipps
March 25, 2019
Read The Transitory Poems Album Reviews
The Transitory Poems
By Mark Corroto
March 25, 2019
Read Birckhead Album Reviews
Birckhead
By Mike Jurkovic
March 25, 2019
Read Live At Moods Album Reviews
Live At Moods
By Chris M. Slawecki
March 25, 2019
Read Live at Frankie's Jazz Club Album Reviews
Live at Frankie's Jazz Club
By Jack Bowers
March 24, 2019
Read Asperger Album Reviews
Asperger
By Don Phipps
March 24, 2019