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Rolf Kuhn and Joachim Kuhn: Brothers

The East German Kuhn brothers present a duo program of abstract, ECM-flavored originals and a couple of standards here. Clarinetist Rolf, the elder by 14 years, demonstrates a warm sylvan tone and boppish turns of phrase that occasionally suggest Buddy DeFranco and Tony Scott. Pianist Joachim exhibits wider mood swings, ranging from impressionistic Jarrett- and Bley-like ruminations to boiling low register episodes.

“Lover Man” and “Everytime We Say Goodbye,” the album’s standards, are sensitive readings with an emphasis on beauty. The originals-most are by Joachim-include complex unison passages as well as wholly improvised sections. The performances flow rather than swing hard, and the avant garde portions are generally cool rather than bombastic. Very pleasant and very nice.]

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