4. Tears in the Rain
5. Somewhere in Between
6. Somebody's Waiting
8. Safe in your Hands
9. Evening Rain
David Ehrlin - Saxes, bass clarinet
Rasmus H. Thomsen - Piano
Patrik Hanson - Bass
Antti Ojala - Drums, percussion
Johanna Karlsson - Violin
Anna Andersson Vass - Violin, viola
Emma Karp - Cello
This is the debut album of a Nordic quartet consisting of three musicians from Sweden and one (Rasmus H. Thomsen) from Denmark. The CD looks rather uninviting, with a gloomy title and an album cover showing a grey picture of a deserted seashore. However, musically this album is very attractive.
The first track sets the pattern, with an appealing melody stated by David Ehrlin's soprano sax. Renewal is one of four tracks in which the quartet is joined by a group of string players. The presence of the strings suggests that this isn't so much jazz that swings as jazz which is meditative and flowing.
Much of the music gets its allure from the interplay between the piano and the saxes. All the tunes were composed by members of the group and many of them approach what you might call folk-jazz. But there are exceptions, such as Tand (Danish for tooth), which has elements of jazz-rock. The final Stardust is not Hoagy Carmichael's tune but a composition by Thomsen which, like most of the other pieces on the CD, is richly melodic and benefits from Ehrlin's saxophone.
I can recommend this album to anyone who likes their jazz to be thoughtful rather than extrovert. But I would still like to know what the "SE" in the group's name stands for.