All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

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...


The Jason Klobnak Quartet/Quintet: Friends & Family

C. Michael Bailey By

Sign in to view read count
Trumpeter/composer Jason Klobnak is one of those artists who creeps up on you. His debut recording, Mountain, Move (Self Produced, 2013), inauspiciously crossed my desk on its way beneath the laser, where it impressed me as just progressive enough to be interesting, but not so much to be a turn off. Klobnak takes the classic Miles Davis quintet format, shrinking it to a quartet by the using a Hammond B3 in place of piano and bass. The result is not Jimmy Smith with a trumpet and less grease, but more a Shirley Scott—Eddie Lockjaw Davis with the governing effect of a disciplined Lee Morgan. Even these are weak analogies given the 50-year difference between the recording periods. Klobnak has a definite vision for his music, one that is tightly arranged, leaving just enough wiggle room for inspired soloing. The trumpeter avoids any descent into a blowing session, an approach that can come at the expense of fresh immediacy and spontaneity. Klobnak navigates this trade-off by composing easy swinging pieces with freshly circuitous heads filled with hooks and earworms. These tunes are hum-worthy.

Klobnak is joined by B3 specialist Jeff Jenkins who readily escapes the Jimmy Smith shade for something soft and refined, less frenetic and earthy as Smith with just the touch of the sacred feeling of Shirley Scott. The result is a very "clean" sound that incorporates tenor saxophonist Eric Erhardt and drummer Kevin Matthews to solid effect. The evidence is apparent on the up-tempo "Through her Eyes" where Erhardt begins his solo after the head, in grand hard bop fashion, as if falling from the back on a speeding truck and then proceeding into a well-developed and conceived solo statement. The group is equally adept at ballads as shown on "One for the Mother." Jenkin's has an ability to prepare and maintain a soft ground upon which the group can build its harmonic architecture. "Inception (It's Mike's Fault)" is this group's "Little Suede Shoes" with an added Cubano-Argentinian element to the mix. Klobnak is fully in his funky element in this brilliantly involved Latin piece. Such is how this recording is populated, thoughtful tunes anticipating the next release by this young artist.


Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Friends & Family

Friends & Family

Jason Klobnak Music

New Chapter

New Chapter

Jason Klobnak Music, Inc

Mountain, Move

Mountain, Move

Self Produced


Related Articles

Read Brothers CD/LP/Track Review
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: September 24, 2018
Read The Fearless Flyers CD/LP/Track Review
The Fearless Flyers
by John Bricker
Published: September 24, 2018
Read Super Mood CD/LP/Track Review
Super Mood
by Glenn Astarita
Published: September 24, 2018
Read Beheaded Totem CD/LP/Track Review
Beheaded Totem
by James Fleming
Published: September 24, 2018
Read New Hope CD/LP/Track Review
New Hope
by Jack Bowers
Published: September 23, 2018
Read The Nobuki Takamen Trio CD/LP/Track Review
The Nobuki Takamen Trio
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 23, 2018
Read "Thicker Than Water" CD/LP/Track Review Thicker Than Water
by Chris Mosey
Published: July 13, 2018
Read "Dirigo Rataplan II" CD/LP/Track Review Dirigo Rataplan II
by Jerome Wilson
Published: September 21, 2018
Read "Sparse" CD/LP/Track Review Sparse
by Don Phipps
Published: January 12, 2018
Read "Back to the Sunset" CD/LP/Track Review Back to the Sunset
by Patrick Burnette
Published: March 28, 2018
Read "Journey Moments" CD/LP/Track Review Journey Moments
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: July 8, 2018
Read "The Street Doctor" CD/LP/Track Review The Street Doctor
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: January 26, 2018