WHOA! Felix Peikli: Royal Flush

Great jazz records these days are  pretty tough to come by. Great CLARINET jazz records are even rarer. Great clarinet POST BOP jazz records are about as common as blacks on Don Sterling’s guest list.

This guy Felix Peikli was born in Norway and went to Berklee to develop his modern jazz skills. And what skills the are! He displays chops that are like a magical whirlwind on the exciting and forward looking “Wagadou Roots” and the overdriving “Heat” that mix the fire of swing, the technique of bop and the heart of a lion. The rhythm team of Michael Bono/g, takeshi Ohbayashi/p, Alexander LJ Toth/b and Anthony Toth/dr are able to lay down deep grooves with guest bassist Marcus Miller as on “Queen of Hearts” as well as deliver sophisticated bop as on “Dark Voyage” which includes some exciting piano work by Ohbayashi. A piece such as “Skyline” gives Metheny-esque panoramic audio perspectives while “Nocturnal” simmers like orange embers.Peikli is simply overwhelmingly virtuosic, creating a climactic series of swirls with vocalist Sara Lade on the adventurous “Royal Flush” are filling the dark sky like a full moon as he glows on an unaccompanied “Summertime.” This guys is someone I gotta see in concert!


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