Polder is a Dutch quintet, led by bassist and composer Guus Bakker. Bakker has been a professional musician since the mid-90s, with an extensive resumé as a sideman, so it's perhaps surprising that Polder is his debut as a bandleader and writer. His unhurried pace is rewarded by a varied and engaging collection of tunes.
The music ranges from punchy, groove-focussed numbers such as "Duck & Hide"with Bakker and Dros in particularly assertive moodto the straight-ahead swing of "November Rain" and the gentler "Dawn," centered on Van Haften's saxophone and Veneman's warm-toned trombone, and "Twenty Two." When Suntrop ramps up his guitar soundas he does on "Look A Here" and "Afternoon"the music takes on a fusion-meets-prog urgency. The catchy "Souldust," co-written by Bakker and Suntrop, is a fine example of the quintet in full flight, flowing melodic lines from sax and trombone over a funky rhythm.
"fOrnette" and "State Of Monk" suggest two possible influences for Bakker's music. "fOrnette" is a slow, almost melancholy, tune with Van Haften's bass clarinet at its heart: fairly brief at just over three minutes but an album highlight. Despite the absence of a piano, "State Of Monk" wears Thelonious Monk's influence proudly as its stylish swing brings the enjoyable Polder to a close.
Duck & Hide; Dawn; Afternoon; Souldust; Twenty Two; fOrnette; November Rains; Look A Here; Way Back; State Of Monk.
Nils Van Haften: saxophone, bass clarinet; Vincent Veneman: trombone; Andreas Suntrop: guitar; Guus Bakker: bass; Pim Dros: drums.
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place 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 effort that will help musicians 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 bottom right video ad). Thank you.
Get more of a good thing
Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.