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Drummer Peter Kronreif has played jazz, hip-hop and R&B around New York since 2010. For Aeronautics, his second album with his band Wayfarers, the Austrian rhythm keeper indicates jazz as his main love with a melodic, grooving, hard bop set.
Like many drumming bandleaders, Kronreif doesn’t showcase his percussive skills so much as his compositions, keeping the rhythms driving but non-flashy. The instrumental spotlights shine more brightly on saxophonists Andrew Gould (alto) and Lucas Pino (tenor), who carry the heaviest load as far as riffs and tunes go, and lead the way in chewy solo satisfaction. Pianist Addison Frei and bassist Martin Nevin get their chances to shine as well, however – Frei in particular makes an impressive showing, not only with a few dazzling breaks, but most importantly with his lushly harmonic, foundation-setting chordal work. Guitarists Matthias Loescher and Alex Wintz join the fun on the dynamic“Obeisance” and the tension-filled “Nodoc” respectively.
For some seriously strong group interplay on good tunes, check the brash “The Undefeated,” the moody “Verdura” (the only song on which Frei plays electric piano), the bristling “Trees,” and the swingingly groovy title track. Between Kronreif’s writing and his band’s performance, Aeronautics is a great showcase for some strong jazz talent that’s relatively unknown – for now.
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