New star of the bass clarinet Oran Etkin here with a stellar empathetic band (trombonist Curtis Fowlkes, guitarist Lionel Loueke, bassist Ben Allison, and drummer Nasheet Waits) on a studio recording made in Brooklyn.
With New Orleans, Indonesian, Chinese, and Israeli influences among the global musical currents swirling around, Etkin, who was mentored and inspired by the late Yusef Lateef, has a robust Michel Portal-like way about him with melodic and compellingly modern-sounding routines dotted throughout the dozen tunes. Pick of the set: the poignant ‘Shirim Ad Kan’ where Etkin “heard the essence of the blues” and communicates that feeling in an exemplary manner. SG
Released on Monday 28 April
Oran Etkin, Gathering Light, Motéma ****