3

Tom Keenlyside Quartet: Fortune Teller

Jack Bowers By

Sign in to view read count
Tom Keenlyside Quartet: Fortune Teller
A jazz flutist who plans to record using only a standard three-member rhythm section as back-up should best be musically astute, technically sound, love what he (or she) is doing and harbor an ample supply of clever and interesting phrases designed to suit every occasion. Even though Tom Keenlyside checks all the boxes on Fortune Teller, there is only so much that any flutist, no matter how purposeful and talented, can do to ensnare a listener's ear for seventy-six minutes.

That's not to say Keenlyside doesn't pull out all the stops and give every number the best he has to offer. Or that his colleagues—pianist Miles Black, bassist Miles Hill, drummer Bernie Arai—are any less ardent or decisive. In the end, however, they are a capable trio whose task is to disburse their talents on Keenlyside's behalf (and add respectable solos), which they do quite well. It is up to Keenlyside to steer the craft, a mission he undertakes with dexterity and enthusiasm. Within the above-mentioned limits, this is a generally bright and pleasing flute-plus-trio session.

It is also one that relies in large measure on the compositional skills of Keenlyside and Hill who co-wrote half a dozen of the album's eleven numbers. They're by and large admirable albeit a step or two short of special. On a slightly higher plane, Keenlyside's buoyant "Cuttin' Time" readily stands its ground against the session's brace of decorous standards, "The Summer Knows" and "On a Clear Day." A lesser-known tune, "Senza Fine," passably resembles another standard, Don Raye / Gene de Paul's "Star Eyes." Tempos for the most part are leisurely to moderate, with only "Pratfall," "Closer Than Never," "Cuttin' Time" and "The Burninator" moving at a more rapid pace. In spite of its snappy name, "Velocity" is as much waltz as burner.

If the sound of a flute whets your taste buds, Fortune Teller should provide an abundance of savory nourishment, as Keenlyside proves a worthy successor to Hubert Laws, Moe Koffman, Herbie Mann, Joe Farrell, Rahsaan Roland Kirk and other masters of the instrument. If he'd had more help on the front line the outcome may have been even more impressive.

Track Listing

The Summer Knows; The Fortune Teller; Pratfall; Sunday, Sunday, Someday; Closer Than Never; On a Clear Day; Cuttin’ Time; Senza Fine; The Dolphin; Velocity; The Burninator.

Personnel

Tom Keenlyside: flute; Miles Black: piano; Miles Hill: bass; Bernie Arai: drums.

Album information

Title: Fortune Teller | Year Released: 2020 | Record Label: Cellar Records

Post a comment about this album

Tags

Shop Amazon

More

Read While We Wait
While We Wait
Christopher Merz's Very Happy Band
Read Hindsight
Hindsight
Charlie Porter
Read Now!
Now!
Swantje Lampert
Read Leonine Aspects
Leonine Aspects
Matthew Shipp
Read Dice of Tenors
Dice of Tenors
César Cardoso

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded albums and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, limited reopenings and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary step that will help musicians and venues now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the sticky footer ad). Thank you!

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.