Jacob Dinesen, Anders Christensen, Laust Sonne: Blessings

Danish hard-bop trio nods to Sonny Rollins, Eddie Harris and Charlie Haden while adding their own contemporary touches


Working, it would seem, as a three-man collective band, the trio are a well-integrated small combo playing contemporary jazz with reference to the hard bop of the 1950s. Free Eddie, which, kicks us off, is an intense ballad featuring churning tenor sax from Dinesen. Forward looking solo lines are played by the saxophonist and drummer at slow, suitable tempo for the main theme.

I’ve Told Every Little Star, wrongly spelled on the back cover, has Dinesen paying homage to jazz master Sonny Rollins using the arrangement Newk used on his 1958 Contemporary LP and at pretty much the same tempo. As he gets into the middle section, however, it is his own more relaxed style, emphasising the melody to good effect. No more fractured staccato runs but at least he knows the classic version and decided to work round it.

Tyv Vals is a piece written by Dinesen, dedicated to a jazz friend and he plays a strong, churning solo that has a sombre hue to it. Bassist Christensen is heavily featured on Sandino, written by Charlie Haden. The bassist has a similar approach to Haden, heard here in his firm, lithe bass lines that are played in common time and never to be rushed. The bass lines are well defined, in time and in tune much as Haden himself used to play them.

Freedom Jazz Dance, the favourite modal jazz-session standby, gives everybody a chance to shine. The solos are bright and breezy, the rhythm thrusting, and it brings the session to a lively close.

This group is obviously inspired by past masters like Rollins and Haden although apart from the respectful musical nods towards them they are branching out into their own contemporary jazz style. A most adventurous and together unit.

Free Eddie; I’ve Told Every Little Star; Anouar; Tyk Vals; Sandono; Freedom Jazz Dance (46.24)
Dinesen (ts); Christensen (b); Laust Sonne (d). Copenhagen, Denmark, 27 July 2020.
April Records APRO841P