By Brian Morton | Published December 2019
Some families gush with affection. Others show love in cooler, quieter tones. This is a thoroughly grown-up family band that relies on deep thought, mutual respect and understatement, rather than competitive rough-housing. David Peterson’s themes are gently swinging, with the kind of attractively lopsided lyricism one hears in his guitar solos. His cousins, Lee and Rob Kohler, grew up in a music-loving family, and it shows in the companionable ease of these performances. “Grey Mist” is one of a few freely improvised pieces, and while these are not necessarily representative of the group’s signature impressionism, they’re indicative of how intuitively bandmembers work together, and how generously they offer creative space to saxophonist Brent Jensen and drummer John Bishop. “Graceful” comes on like a cousin of “Lush Life,” but finds a more optimistic narrative as it develops. “Winter Colors” itself is quite appropriately the signature cut, establishing a congenial dynamic and a sophistication that sustains to the very end. It’s an immaculately executed, but above all mature, recording. One knows from the beginning that this isn’t a bunch of colts feeling their oats, but seasoned players with nothing left to prove, but much to say.
Winter Colors: Winter Colors; I Need You Too; Rise Up; Graceful; Grey Mist; The Wind Has Gone Down; Danza, White Flurries; M&M Blues; Solstice Song. (53:08)
Personnel: Brent Jensen, saxophone; Lee Kohler, piano; David Peterson, guitar; Rob Kohler, bass; John Bishop, drums.