Thursday, April 03, 2014

Henrik Otto Donner and Tumo - And It Happened... (TUM, 2014)

This is a large ensemble recording honoring composer and trumpeter Henrik Otto Donner. Donner´s compositions are performed by TUMO, a 33-member orchestra comprised of leading Finnish improvisers a 12-member string section led by Donner while the rest of the orchestra was led by Mikko Hassinen. Several of the early performances on this album featured vocals by Johanna Iivanainen. She has a pleasant and plaintive way of singing with just the right amount of emotional balance. Featured improviser Juhani Aaltonen is heard on tenor saxophone on three extended instrumental compositions as well as on alto flute and tenor saxophone songs performed by vocalist. His work on the extended performance "And It Happened..." is very impressive, with a stripped down quartet section featured allowing Aaltonen to take an explosive solo which displays a very impressive dynamic range moving from quiet and probing to loud and free and continuously keeping the listener on their toes. Finally, TUMO alone performs a new arrangement of the first composition that Donner ever recorded, "For Friends and Relatives" appropriately featuring a powerful swinging feel and pungent trumpet solo. (April 15) And It Happened -

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