Since receiving a scholarship to study at the New England Conservatory of Music, Israeli born pianist Omer Klein has amassed an impressive resume in the U.S. After moving to New York in 2006, the twenty-five year old musician began working with an impressive list of artists, including Joel Frahm, Clarence Penn, Ben Street and Donny McCaslin.
Introducing Omer Klein marks Klein's recording debut as a leader, and features bassist Omer Avital, drummer Ziv Ravitz and percussionist Itamar Doari. The all original set melds the sounds of the young composer's Israeli heritage with the acoustic traditions of American jazz. The resulting performances are vibrant and fresh-sounding.
The opening track, "Abutbul," has a playful, melodic bounce, with a Chick Corea vibe. The emphasis here, as it is throughout most of the disc, is on melody. Klein develops simple themes with sparse harmonic support, as on "Malchut," where the pianist's vocalizing emphasizes the accessible nature of the piece. Accessibility, however, need not be synonymous with lightness or simplicity. On the contrary, Klein manages to sustain rich sonorities in his multi-cultural approach, blending folk-like lyrical qualities with multifaceted rhythms.
The influence of classical piano is evident on the Chopinesque "Melody For Alon," as well as the disc's two solo piano pieces, "Unerasable" and "Tiul Be 'Israel." The latter builds with a quiet intensity, demonstrating a level of restraint rarely heard in younger artists.
Considering the focused conceptual vision heard throughout this impressive debut, there is little doubt that Klein will emerge as a unique and recognizable voice in the coming years.
Abutbul; Malchut; Oud Song; Unerasable; Melody For Alon; 3/4 Mantra; Netanya; The Journey Home; Tiul Be 'Israel; Kavana.
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.