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: Fredrik Lindborg: A Swedish Portrait

Jim Worsley BY

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: Fredrik Lindborg: A Swedish Portrait
A time capsule is opened carefully, and its contents are respectively honored and revered. This is the purposeful and respectful sensation revealed on Fredrik Lindborg's faithful homage to the music of Swedish baritone sax legend Lars Gullin. While the arrangements are new, and at times brilliant, the creativity and ambitions of Gullin are richly intact.

Lindborg's trio, featuring bassist Martin Sjostedt and drummer Daniel Fredriksson, invigorate with educated conversation while flying high on fiery octane. In unison with an impressive string section, Gullin's music is showcased with the full encompassment of Swedish tradition and American swing.

After a brief mood enhancer, the journey begins. The trio weaves through a host of changes that are frequented by the classical lines of violinists Daniel Migdal and Henrik Naimark Meyers, as well as violaist Yivali Zilliacus, and cellist Amalie Stalheim. Compositionally, Gullin also adorned a cinematic umbrella. That element is emboldened here with imagery infused moments that expand the listening scope even further.

The ensemble is in no rush to get there, instead spiritedly enjoying the space they are in. Full tilt romps are given time for exploration and interplay that ushers in deeper individual developments and more complex exchanges. While there is much joy to be found in that, moods of romance, sadness, darkness, and bewilderment are given the same air of opportunity to evolve.

There is an abundance of first-rate musicianship on display here that indeed paints a vivid portrait of the vision and compositional prowess of Lars Gullen. As the front man, Lindborg leads by example on tenor, baritone, and soprano saxophones. He empowers the ensemble with a vigorous display of note selections and melodic sensibilities. As well, he is responsible for the majority of these stellar arrangements. They breathe fresh air into the time capsule, positively impacting this presentation with respectful intentions.

While the vast landscape of A Swedish Portrait is lush with strings, a crafty directional compass, and vintage exposures, it is important to note that the Fredrickson and Sjostedt rhythm section is down to the bone. The Lindborg trio push the limits and ignite hot grooves throughout, framed in an encapsulation of their own.

Track Listing

Mazurka; Har någon sett/Baritonome; Late Date; Galium Verum; Merlin; I min smala sang; Toka Voka Oka Boka; Fine Together; Holy Grail; Igloo; MA; Decent Eyes; Danny's Dream; Be Careful.


Fredrik Lindborg: saxophone; Martin Sjostedt: bass; Daniel Fredriksson: drums; Daniel Migdal: violin; Henrik Maimark Meyers: violin; Yivaldi Zilliacus: viola; Amalie Stalheim: cello.

Album information

Title: Fredrik Lindborg: A Swedish Portrait | Year Released: 2020 | Record Label: Prophone Records

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