Klang: Brooklyn Lines…Chicago Spaces

This fourth recording from the stable quartet assembled and led by Windy City clarinetist James Falzone is a charming yet still cerebral collection. Falzone keeps it simple, focused and lighthearted, composing every tune save for two spacious AACM-oriented group improvisations (the “Chicago Spaces”). There are no guest stars here, and no full-length tributes to his licorice-stick forebears Jimmy Giuffre and Benny Goodman, as on the previous two KLANG discs. But Giuffre’s contemplative sagacity and Goodman’s spunk remain embedded in Falzone’s sensibility as both a composer and a player. That said, his interactions with vibraphonist Jason Adasiewicz thankfully mostly eschew the swing-era tropes Goodman and Lionel Hampton pioneered in favor of evocative, intimate soundscapes like “Ukrainian Village,” or a beguiling yet implacable song like “Blue Jays,” which perhaps best fits Falzone’s description of his composing process here as one of “found abstraction.”