Best of 2019 #69: Alexa Tarantino – “Winds of Change”


I don’t like doing the comparison thing.  It’s an easy target for snark, practically asking to be rebuked, and, when you get to the heart of it, it’s a lazy writing device.  BUT… not for nothing, when I listen to Winds of Change, it’s like the rush of springtime and hope and rejuvenation that I feel when listening to a classic hardbop recording like Duke Pearson’s Sweet Honey Bee.  There’s nothing quite like an album with melodies that loft upward as if given wings, harmonies that stir up gentle breezes that are somehow both warm and cool, and tempos that elicit a sense of what a walk through the park in low-gravity conditions might do for the soul.  Alexa Tarantino brings all this on her 2019 release.  There’s something delightfully old-school about this recording, and sometimes that’s everything.

Your album personnel:  Alexa Tarantino (alto & soprano saxophones, alto flute), Christian Sands (piano), Joe Martin (bass), Rudy Royston (drums), and Nick Finzer (trombone).

Released on Posi-Tone Records.

Music from New York City.

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