The Munich-born saxophonist Carolyn Breuer had private lessons with Branford Marsalis and George Coleman in New York and is now releasing her piano-less new album on her own NotNowMom! Records.
She starts her album with her verison of Jimi Hendrix‘ “Have You Ever Been (To Electric Ladyland)” changing the Electric to Acoustic. It features a strange-sounding Hammond B3 organ played by Hermann Breuer and has a somewhat languorous movement. She continues with her own “Mimo Is Back” which displays her enjoyable chops and those of flugelhornist Ralf Hesse on this poppy number. “Zwischenspiel” features Peter Schneider, one of two guitarists here (the other being Christian Sudendorf) and again, the track veers towards the nicer, easier side of the pond. I’m a bit puzzled over the mixing and recording on the record because some of the instruments tend to be kept away from the front and the sound gets a bit muffled.
There is a cover of Joni Mitchell‘s “Last Chance Lost” where the drums are pushed too far back once the guitar sets in. Her own “Sax And The City” adds a subtle vibes solo by Tim Collins to the mix and Carolyn’s playing here is refined with elaborate changes. I was never that keen on the Blues so I’d rather forget the same old same old “Ramtown Blues” here. She dedicates her “Dear Joni” to the afore-mentioned Joni Mitchell with a fair enough, perceptive ballad-like ode. Carolyn plays soprano and alto on the album and is backed by Breuer again on “59 Rue D’Orléans”, this time on trombone. The song sustains some tension here which is gone again with a relatively lackluster run through the Eden Ahbez classic “Nature Boy”.