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Finnish guitarist Kalle Kalima uses the cinema as a platform for riding a wave of abstract impressionism. As this album title intimates, the premise is based on eccentric film director David Lynch's body of work. The band pulls quite a few punches on a per-track basis, spanning cantankerous minimalism, free jazz, and levitating sub-themes amid some abrupt crash-and-burn breakouts. The quartet seldom allows anyone to attain a comfort zone, but this isn't to say that the program is unfocused or loosely organized; Kalima also excels in the entertainment department during these irregularly moving parts.
In 1977, Lynch released the off-center horror film Eraserhead, which over time became a cult classic. Here, Kalima's arrangement features edgy sax lines, flickering accordion parts and a loosely based Latin groove that morphs into a state of mystical debauchery. With odd contrasts ruling the roost, various sounds, textures and hues parlay Lynch's surrealist tendencies. However, they spin a low-key vibe during the bridge, sparked by Mikko Innanen's whispery alto sax lines against the guitarist's closed-handed plucking techniques, while turning up the heat via a surging theme-building spree. Kalima is effective at conjuring the subversive elements of Lynch's cinematic stylizations. Perhaps a major component of the underlying message is that weirdness is goodness.
Personnel: Kalle Kalima: electric guitar and percussion; Mikko Innanen: alto saxophone, baritone saxophone, flutes and percussion; Veli Kujala: quarter-tone accordion and percussion; Teppo Hauta-aho: double bass, percussion and doors.
Jazz is a continuing revelation. The best show I ever attended was the
Roots Picnic at Penn's Landing in Philadelphia, or was it Robert
Glasper's Experiment at Lincoln Center, or was it Chick Corea with
Brian Blade at Oberlin College? Most of all I enjoy playing guitar and
composing beats with my Brooklyn-based group Space Captain.