The Mark Kleinhaut Trio – A Balance Of Light

The Mark Kleinhaut Trio
A Balance Of Light
(Invisible Music – 2003)
by Paula Edelstein

Guitarist/composer Mark Kleinhaut composed eight new songs for A BALANCE OF LIGHT and as the story goes, Kleinhaut was inspired to write these songs for his upcoming session with alto-saxophonist Bobby Watson while residing on the coastal barrier island of Cape Hatteras. Kleinhaut offers his listeners a solid, jazz performance that you’ll appreciate from start to finish. “Ferdinand and Isabelle” opens the set with prominent solos from Watson. There is a joyful vibe to the music which may (or may not) be a reference to the Spanish royalty that financed many a conquistador’s expedition to the colonies along the Atlantic coast. The versatility of this recording is astounding! “Erikita” is a breathy, romantic ballad that oozes with sensuality while “Start It Up” finds Watson in the hard-bop mode that many of his fans have come to associate him with as a result of his many collaborations with Art Blakey and The Jazz Messengers, Horizon, Curtis Lundy and George Coleman. Mark Kleinhaut’s compositional integrity is clearly apparent while his highly evolved musical vocabulary on the guitar is the perfect foil for Watson’s saxophonics. His tones are clean and his phrasings are melodic and beautiful. A BALANCE OF LIGHT is a near perfect program of jazz compositions offering essential jazz elements, colors, forms and in-the-moment improvisations that feed the energy between Kleinhaut, Watson, Jim Lyden on bass and Les Harris, Jr. on drums.

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