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Altin Sencalar - In Good Standing (Posi-Tone)

8 June 2023

Following up the deeply personal Reconnected, an album that explored his Latin and Turkish heritage, trombonist Altin Sencalar opens the doors to the wider world on his third album In Good Standing. The New York-based Texan pulls in influences from mentors and inspirations and comes up with a rollicking, diverse album that leaks the spirit of jazz tradition. A skilled, melodic player, Sencalar composes and chooses tunes that reflect that sensibility, pulling in fellow players in the same mood. Saxophonists Diego Rivera and Patrick Cornelius, pianist Art Hirahara,” and rhythm section *Boris Kozlov and Rudy Royston hone in on Sencalar’s vibe and settle in comfortably. Check the Latin fire of the Chick Corea tribute “Homenaje a Armando,” for example, the New Orleans-spiced groove of Jack Wilson’s “Do It,” or the relaxed funk of pet-inspired “Navy’s Mood” – all tunes with rhythmic drive that never let go of tunefulness. Sencalar’s lush, bold tone suits the ballads especially well, of course, as heard on the other dog-driven tune “Lullaby for JJ,” the introspective post-pandemic lilt “Reimagined,” and a gorgeous version of the late Wayne Shorter’s “Fall.” On top of all that, Sencalar infuses the entire album with a sense of pure joy – in playing with his pals, in playing these tunes, in simply making music. In Good Standing is just that.