Martin Wind, Light Blue (Laika)
Martin Wind gathers a coterie of distinguished colleagues and demonstrates why for two decades he has been a mainstay bassist in the US and Europe. In settings that range from a piece inspired by “Sweet Georgia Brown” to the edge of free jazz in “Power Chords,” Wind employs the energies and imaginations of drummers Matt Wilson and Duduka Da Fonseca, saxophonist Scott Robinson, trumpeter Ingrid Jensen, clarinetist Anat Cohen and pianists Gary Versace and Bill Cunliffe.
He marshals his forces in combinations that employ textures as varied as those of Robinson’s booming bass sax contrasted with the lilt of Cohen’s clarinet and—in “Rose”—an ensemble sound somehow bigger than the sum of its five instruments. Robinson’s hybrid reed instrument the taragota and Versace’s waves of organ chords have much to do with that. Da Fonseca is the drummer on half of the album’s ten pieces, joined on the lively “Seven Steps To Rio,” “De Norte A Sul,” “A Sad Story” and “Longing” by his wife, the singer Maucha Audnet. Wind’s arco solo and Audnet’s aching vocal on “A Sad Story”—with intertwining commentary from Cohen’s clarinet—make the track a highlight of the album. All of the compositions and arrangements are Wind’s. He wrote “A Genius and a Saint” in memory of the late bassist Bob Bowen (1945-2010).
There is more of the power of Da Fonseca’s compelling and subtle drumming on his own new album of compositions by his influential fellow Brazilian Dom Salvador.