185

Nathan Eklund Group: The Crooked Line

By

Sign in to view read count
Trumpeterr/flugelhornist Nathan Eklund's The Crooked Line offers a pretty good measure of his quintet's capabilities. Anyone hearing much of this album, without any prior identification, would likely tab this to be straight out of the hallowed Blue Note era of the early-to-mid 1960s.



The title track is an attractive post-bop vehicle; the jaunty trumpet melody and solo insinuating the memories of Lee Morgan, Kenny Dorham and Johnny Coles. Joe Elefante's florid piano solo is right in the pocket and sets up a robust tenor sax statement from Craig Yaremko who, if you close your eyes, could be a young Joe Henderson. The tune also finishes with a Josh Dion drum solo.

The track is more or less typical of the album. A variety of tunes, mostly originals, find the quintet in a comfortable groove led by Eklund's warm tone. Although he doesn't have the power of a Lee Morgan or Freddy Hubbard, the spirit is there. The album's one ballad, "More Than One Way," is a good example of his attractive flugelhorn style. Yaremko plays alto sax on "The Mayor" and soprano on "Kaydee," but his calling card is the sure-footed tenor work on the remainder of the album. Elefante provides some nice comping and solos, bringing the influence of Herbie Hancock's early brand.

Eklund chooses three tunes that are not his own. One is Icelandic popster Björk's mid-tempo "Isobel" and, along with tenor saxman Yarembo, he turn it into a more than passable track. The Jerome Kern jazz standard "All the Things You Are" is a fine opportunity for all hands to take flight. The only miscue is the appearance of a Lee Morgan tune, "Totem Pole," performed against a tango pulse which sounds forced.

All in all, The Crooked Line brings a keen insight into some new and exciting musicians.


Track Listing: The Mayor; Emancipated Thinking; Isobel; Scatterbrained Prelude; Scatterbrained; More Ways Than One; All the Things You Are; Kydee; Totem Pole; The Crooked Line.

Personnel: Nathan Eklund: trumpet, flugelhorn; Craig Yaremko: saxophones; Joe Elefante: piano; Brian Killeen: bass; Josh Dion: drums.

Title: The Crooked Line | Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Jazz Excursion Records


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Another North CD/LP/Track Review Another North
by Roger Farbey
Published: October 19, 2017
Read Gledalec CD/LP/Track Review Gledalec
by John Sharpe
Published: October 19, 2017
Read Flux Reflux CD/LP/Track Review Flux Reflux
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 19, 2017
Read Christmas With Champian CD/LP/Track Review Christmas With Champian
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: October 19, 2017
Read Harmony of Difference CD/LP/Track Review Harmony of Difference
by Phil Barnes
Published: October 18, 2017
Read No Answer CD/LP/Track Review No Answer
by Karl Ackermann
Published: October 18, 2017
Read "3Divas" CD/LP/Track Review 3Divas
by Geannine Reid
Published: June 1, 2017
Read "December Songs" CD/LP/Track Review December Songs
by Geno Thackara
Published: December 16, 2016
Read "Skarkali" CD/LP/Track Review Skarkali
by Budd Kopman
Published: October 26, 2016
Read "Light Shines In" CD/LP/Track Review Light Shines In
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 2, 2016
Read "The Best of Bossacucanova" CD/LP/Track Review The Best of Bossacucanova
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: June 6, 2017
Read "Masters Of War" CD/LP/Track Review Masters Of War
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: January 29, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.