Robert Kyle: Blue Winds
Sax payer Robert Kyle's third album continues in the mode of his second in that all the compositions on the set are his own. They are the standard lot, a couple of blues, some ballads and a swinger or two. All are listenable, but not all are especially memorable. Two exceptions are the lovely ballads "Three Angels" and "Sweet Life" where Kyle's similarity to the playing of tenor man Ernie Watts is especially apparent. Another fine track is the swinging "Sammy Boy" where we are treated to a solid piano solo by Llew Matthews and some funky harmonica by Dale Spalding. These tracks further distinguish this album from Kyle's previous one in that the latter leaned far more to the smooth side of the jazz spectrum. When Spalding (he's also on "Blues 4 Dr. Foot") and/or Riner Scivally are present, Kyle's playing seems to be energized. Scivally's guitar on "Ism-Eddie" (where do they get these tune titles?) encourages Kyle to engage in some fine up tempo improvising. The other tracks where there is only Kyle and the three person rhythm section performing are far less exciting and ear grabbing.
Nonetheless, Mr. Kyle is a fine player and has an excellent cast of characters around him on this CD, which is worth a listen. This album and his others are available through Kyle's Internet site, www.robertkyle.com.
Track Listing: Ism-Eddie; What Birds Know; Blues 4 Dr. Foot; Three Angels; Mr. G's Wild Ride; Say What; Sammy Boy; Wanderin'; Pocketful `O Trouble; Sweet Life
Personnel: Robert Kyle - Saxophones; Jason Harnell - Drums; Tomas Gargaon - Bass; Llew Matthews - Piano; Riner Scivally - Guitar; Dale Spalding - Harmonica
Record Label: Upside Out Records