Falkner Evans: Level Playing Field

Level Playing Field (Metropolitan) is the debut album for Oklahoma-born pianist Falkner Evans, and hopefully his final offering until he learns something about harmony, how to write an interesting song and, above all, the art of swinging. He’s nowhere near ready for primetime. This collection of five Evans originals, a couple of standards and two other forgettable tracks is not even fit for elevator music; perhaps escalators. The CD raises the question: How did bassist Cecil McBee end up in the rhythm section, along with drummer Matt Wilson? Evans drags them down to his own playing-field level. However, McBee doesn’t help his own cause with a feeble arco on k.d. lang’s “Wash Me Clean.”