Wil Swindler

Universe B

oa2 22075

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MUSIC REVIEW BY Kyle O'Brien, Jazz Society of Oregon

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Saxophonist/composer Swindler's band isn't quite a big band ... call it a medium band. But its eleven members create a wall of sound, with the added textures of bass clarinet, alto flute, euphonium and French horn to make it interesting. From the get-go Swindler, the 2008 Gil Evans Fellowship winner, sets up the band as his tool for delivering smart compositions and arrangements. "Universe B" is a smokin' modern bopper with enough chord changes to challenge any soloist, though tenor saxophonist Peter Sommer tackles it with ease. Like Gil Evans, Swindler likes a big, orchestral sound. Sometimes the mix is overly orchestrated, adding too many layers when one or two would do. But when he gets it right, as on the jaunty swinger, "The Equestrian Pedestrian," or the colorful waltz, "Glass," his blend of horns and rhythm pays off. When Swindler finds that balance between melody and orchestration on a regular basis, he will be a compositional force.






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