Daily jazz blog, Marlbank

Verneri Pohjola, Monkey Mind, Edition ***1/2

Here on this his latest album Finnish trumpeter Verneri Pohjola is with fellow Finn Olavi Louhivuori on drums, the British pianist Kit Downes and Danish bassist Jasper Høiby in a tightly packed collection of themes and highly disciplined …

Published: 8 Nov 2023. Updated: 7 months.

Here on this his latest album Finnish trumpeter Verneri Pohjola is with fellow Finn Olavi Louhivuori on drums, the British pianist Kit Downes and Danish bassist Jasper Høiby in a tightly packed collection of themes and highly disciplined elaborations on these. Tunes are largely Pohjola's and of these one in particular grabbed us a whole lot - the delicate, almost hymnal 'Of Our Children'. Not an album where everyone goes down all guns blazing Monkey Mind was recorded in February this year. It's an often solemn listen but as ever Pohjola stamps his personality on everything he touches so beautifully and keeps like minded company here with Downes delivering a stand out contribution on 'Out of Silence.'

Tags: Reviews

Lage Lund, Most Peculiar, Criss Cross ****1/2

You kind of know instantly on this latest album for Dutch label Criss Cross that Norwegian guitarist Lage Lund has seized the current release listening agenda once again with this very fine recording session made in the US in June 2022. Lund has a …

Published: 7 Nov 2023. Updated: 7 months.

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You kind of know instantly on this latest album for Dutch label Criss Cross that Norwegian guitarist Lage Lund has seized the current release listening agenda once again with this very fine recording session made in the US in June 2022. Lund has a tremendous US band with him - pianist Sullivan Fortner, bassist Matt Brewer and drummer Tyshawn Sorey - and the tunes here have a very unforced organic quality to them.

Tunes are Lund's own and they are a reflective, introspective collection but full too of an enuduring brightness. We'd pick out 'Warsaw' and 'Elephants' as the pieces that grabbed us most: one quite serious, the other brighter and more joyful.

If you are a Paul Motian fan you get some sense of the kind of mood some of that great drummer's later groups conveyed. Sorey provides a great looseness here that underpins everything on the album and allows all the players to express themselves fully. Out now