Lyn's Une - Alyn Cosker -

Though Linn's jazz catalog has relied largely on vocalists, you'll also find some choice instrumental groups. On one of the latest, Lyn's Une, young Scottish drummer Alyn Cosker fronts a seven-man ensemble, playing all original tunes except for the final track, "When Autumn Comes," co-written with singer Maureen McMullan. McMullen also arranged an introduction to track five, "Smiling Down," on which her lovely voice is multi-tracked to produce some downright ethereal harmonies. Throughout the set, Cosker displays huge amounts of energy, a vivid imagination, and a reluctance to settle into any one style. His pieces encompass a wide range of styles, including late-night bar jazz ("Oh Dear"), smoky ballads ("Don't Forget Me"), laidback swing ("Lyn's Une"), funk ("Twitter and Bisted), lazy-day ballads ("Unannounced"), and breezy soul strut ("Straight Through Boogaloo"). Cosker and his excellent sidemen nail each style, making it sound natural and easy, like the style is all theirs for the moment. The ensemble is Cosker's trio (Cosker on drums, David Dunsmuir on guitar, and Ross Hamilton on bass) joined by guests Jason Rebello (piano), Paul Towndrow (soprano and alto saxophone), Tommy Smith (tenor saxophone), Ryan Quigley (trumpet), and Maureen McMullan (vocals). Linn engineers have given the group a nicely focused, open-sounding recording that perfectly balances the players against one another. Like the new Claire Martin disc, the recording is available as a hybrid multichannel SACD (Linn AKD 338) and in various advanced-resolution downloads.

05 October 2009