Jeppe Zacho got to assemble his dream quintet for his debut, INTRODUCING. I’m hoping for more albums to follow.

April Records

Jeppe Zacho – Tenor Saxophone, Compositions; Jonas Due – Trumpet and Flugelhorn; Thomas Borno – Piano; Anders Fjeldsted – Double Bass; Henrik Holst Hansen – Drums; Eliel Lazo – Congas on ‘Loyal Soldier’ and ‘El Bravado’

Jeppe Zacho has been part of the Danish music scene for a long time. He got his first music award way back in 2013. He’s played in quite a few different jazz bands and he’s a well known educator. He finally has an album with his name on the cover, INTRODUCING JEPPE ZACHO.

The liner notes describe the music as “modern jazz in the old fashioned way.” The tone of INTRODUCING JEPPE ZACHO is contemporary while keeping the vitality and excitement of all those timeless jazz records we grew up on.

’Self Express ’is the blistering start to the album. Drums and piano kick things into high gear and then Zacho lets loose with an intense tenor sax, including some squeals in the upper register. He reminds me of Eddie ‘Lockjaw ’Davis. His tone isn’t quite as big but his sound is aggressive and bluesy. Jonas Due makes a lot of noise on trumpet in a very good way. This quintet sounds like a little big band.

Davis didn’t stick to playing one kind of jazz and either does Zacho. Besides soul jazz, you can hear swing, bop, hard bop, and Latin jazz on INTRODUCING.

‘Loyal Soldier ’is a latin-influenced tune with some interesting time signature changes. Due switches to flugelhorn and plays some beautifully fluid melodic lines. Zacho’s solo uses the tenor’s full range from the lowest to the highest notes and he swings the whole while.

Eliel Lazo plays congas on ‘Loyal Soldier ’and ‘El Bravado.’ He’s played with musicians as diverse as Michel Camilo, Chucho Valdez, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Dave Holland, and many others. Cuban born Lazo now calls Copenhagen home.

‘Bulows Way ’is a sweet mid tempo hard bop tune. Due’s on trumpet again sounding great. Anders Fjeldsted’s bass is the jaunty heartbeat of the group. Zacho sounds a little like Getz here and Thomas Borne’s piano hints at Red Garland. Henrik Holst Hansen is such a solid drummer. He’s a master of dynamic control. This group sounds like they’ve been playing together forever.

’The Sweet One ’is the only ballad on the album and it’s gorgeous. ‘Rendezvous ’is more hard bop but with a lot of interesting angular lines in it.

Jeppe Zacho got to assemble his dream quintet for his debut, INTRODUCING. I’m hoping for more albums to follow.