Linda May Han Oh, “Western” from Walk Against Wind (2017): Something Else! premiere

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Feature photo: Shervin Lainez

This Friday (April 14, 2017) comes the release of Linda May Han Oh’s fourth long player, Walk Against Wind (via Biophilia Records. She leads a quartet full of guys who like her, make you feel assured about the future of jazz: Matthew Stevens (guitar), Ben Wendel (tenor sax) and Justin Brown (drums), with cameos by pianist Fabian Almazan and percussionist Minji Park.

A solid follow-up to 2013’s Sun Pictures, Wind is bound to earn more accolades for the Malaysian-born, Australian-raised bassist now a fixture in New York’s epicenter jazz scene.

Linda May Han Oh, better known as simply Linda Oh, is one of the most fluid and instinctive bass players in NYC, whether it’s of the acoustic or electric bass guitar variety. Though she continues to get more sophisticated with each record, her effortless blurring of the lines between jazz and more contemporary styles into something all her own is something she mastered right out of the gate with her debut, Entry.

Premiering in the stream above, “Western,” is the track that closes out Walk Against Wind but it’s by no means a coast to the finish line. It also offers solid evidence of Oh as more than just a bass player in demand from the likes of Pat Metheny, Joe Lovano and Dave Douglas; she’s plenty legit as a composer and bandleader, too. The syncopation that heavily involved every member of the band really is sublime, and I dare you not to be drawn in by that alone. It also points up to her flair for complexity in her scores that are nonetheless personal and engaging.

Preorder/purchase Linda May Han Oh’s Walk Against Wind from Bandcamp.

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