Swedish saxophonist and composer Klas Lindquist, a recipient of multiple prestigious awards, is set to unveil his latest album this autumn. Titled “Alternative Source of Energy,” this set marks his third consecutive album with his nonet, following the release of “Lift Off” in 2008 and “You Need It” in 2010. As with his previous works, the spotlight is firmly on Klas, serving not only as a performer however also as a prolific composer and arranger.
Lindquist’s musical vision shines through in every note of the album, a testament to his exceptional composition and the ensemble’s impressive performance. The music, meticulously crafted for the band’s members including trumpeters Karl Olandersson and Nils Janson, as well as saxophonists Fredrik Lindborg and Robert Nordmark, exudes a vibrant energy while maintaining a perfect balance. The synergy between the six winds and the rhythm section, led by the dynamic Daniel Fredriksson on drums, is a hallmark of this production.
To capture the essence of the music, the album was recorded live in Benny Andersson’s (ABBA) expansive studio on Skepps-holmen in Stockholm. Sound engineer Pål Svenre then worked his magic, delivering a top-tier sound quality that adds a layer of excellence to the tracks. In addition to Klas Lindquist’s compositions, the album features a heartfelt composition by the late Swedish singer Alice Babs, an artist cherished by the band.
The album opens with “At Ease,” a track composed to ease the listener into the soundscape of Lindquist’s nine-piece ensemble. Each note has been meticulously crafted with a specific musician in mind, emphasizing the ensemble’s collective importance. Lindquist’s compositional finesse is showcased through a densely arranged theme and a well-structured alto solo, setting the stage for what’s to come.
“Thorium,” the second track, ponders the future of energy sources, contemplating the potential of thorium reactors and other sustainable options. Lindquist’s composition reflects an optimistic outlook, inviting the audience to envision a world powered by new, cleaner energy sources. The track’s narrative is thoughtfully intertwined with Lindquist’s signature saxophone melodies.
“Swell,” the subsequent track, draws inspiration from the warmth of Almuñecar on the southern coast of Spain, offering a beautifully arranged ballad that features Lindquist on clarinet. It’s a moment of tender musicality that showcases Lindquist’s versatility as a performer. The album pays homage to the late Joey DeFrancesco in the track “Joey,” a blues based tribute brought to life by guest player Leo Lindberg on the Hammond organ. Also of note is Robert Nordmark’s expressive tenor solo, over the vibrant horn backgrounds, that elevates the emotional resonance of the piece.
“The Narrator,” serves as a platform for baritone sax player Fredrik Lindborg’s expressive storytelling. Lindquist masterfully weaves a musical tale, engaging Nils Janson on trumpet to provide a counter-narrative, reflecting the nature of jazz as a musical dialect. “Dream,” yet another musical gem, showcases one of the most intriguing arrangements on the album, once again featuring Lindquist on clarinet. His ability to create vivid musical dreams and translate them into melodies is truly enchanting.
“Nilsie” is a heartfelt Ellington-inspired ballad, unique on the album as it was not composed by Lindquist himself. The genesis of this piece is deeply touching. Renowned Swedish singer Alice Babs, a frequent attendee at their performances, shared the song with Lindquist before her passing. She encouraged Lindquist to interpret it, leading to the creation of “Nilsie,” a beautiful musical tribute titled in honor of her husband Nils-Ivar. The poignant story behind this composition adds a special layer of significance to the album.
The album concludes with “Bernadette,” the sole Latin piece, offering a spotlight to trumpet player Karl Olandersson. His elegant and brilliant playstyle truly shines through, adding a vibrant and dynamic conclusion to the musical journey.
In “Alternative Source of Energy,” Klas Lindquist demonstrates not only his prowess as a soloist but also his mastery in leading a large ensemble, extracting the utmost from his compositions. This album is a feast for the ears, showcasing Lindquist’s deep understanding of the language and his ability to create a musical narrative that resonates profoundly with the audience.
Highly recommended, “Alternative Source of Energy” is set to be released during the Stockholm Jazz Festival in October with the release concert scheduled at Scalateatern, Wallingatan 32, on October 16 at 9 p.m. The album will be available on CD and all streaming platforms through TengTones Records.
1 At Ease 4:42 | 2 Thorium 7:12 | 3 Swells 3:47 | 4 Joey 7:01 | 5 The Narrator 5:28 | 6 Dream 4:09 | 7 Nilsie 4:48 | 8 Bernadette 4:13
Klas Lindquist – alto saxophone and clarinet | Robert Nordmark – tenor saxophone and flute | Fredrik Lindborg – baritone saxophone and bass clarinet | Karl Olandersson – trumpet and flugelhorn | Nils Janson – trumpet | Magnus Wiklund – trombone | Petter Carlson Welden – piano | Kenji Rabson – bass | Daniel Fredriksson – drums
Lina Lövstrand – flutes on track 8 | Filip Ekestubbe – piano on tracks 2 & 4 | Leo Lindberg – organ on tracks 4 & 8 | Calle Rasmusson – percussion on track 8
Release date: 16 October 2023
Format: CD | Streaming
Last modified: October 24, 2023