Stan Killian

Brooklyn Calling

Tough Texas tenor turned New Yorker Stan Killian, a regular at Greenwich Village’s late and lamented 55 Bar and host of a popular Queens jam session, salutes his post-COVID homecoming on his fourth album for Sunnyside, which adds the jazz-rock flavor of atmospheric guitarist Paul Bollenback to longtime bandmates Corcoran Holt bass and McClenty Hunter drums. The album showcases seven complexly woven originals in a variety of feels, with Killian’s fetchingly robust, throaty sound and logical lines front and center. Soloists excel, but the accent is on interplay, with Hunter’s diffuse drumming recalling former Killian sideman Antonio Sánchez, and Holt offering engaging vamps and counterpoint.

Justly known as a soulful swinger, Killian doesn’t disappoint with the cheerful lope of the opening tune, “Horizon,” which conjures the shimmering feel of staring out to sea before fluid tenor and guitar solos. The band swings easily in and out of 5/4 on “Holocene,” with sparky chorus trades and Holt walks fast under the excellent “Buyback,” with Killian alternating between biting staccato and legato flow.

On Sale Now
May 2024
Stefon Harris
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