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Sylvain Luc: Joko

Another example of really classy jazz musicians doing the lighter thing -- very classily!

Sylvain Luc


Label: Dreyfus
US Release Date: 2007-01-20
UK Release Date: 2006-11-13

No reason to doubt what's been said about Luc as a major jazz guitarist, but small evidence here of any attempt by him to demonstrate that he is. This is rather pop-jazz, light music by top-drawer musicians in various combinations, altogether sounding sufficiently bitty to be likened to a Various Artists selection. Jackie Terrasson on piano duets with Luc on, indeed, "Light My Fire." Warms things up, before in succession a track dominated by dripping-tap noises from percussionists, another opened by Eric Longsworth's visiting cello, another featuring what sounds like an oriental string instrument. There are some odd sound effects during Olivier Ker Ouro's first visit with virtuoso and musically conservative harmonica, there's some pleasant enough fusion on a title with percussion intro and interlude, a breezy item with good bass guitar and Michel Portal playing probably a low-register clarinet, Ouro again, and as we progress through the fifteen short tracks there's a very attractive miniature which opens with what sounds like mellifluous tenor saxophone, though clarinet and bass clarinet sounds proceed in a succession hardly suggesting Portal switched. There's a number opening with cello and sounding like a string quartet with guitar; and progressing to more Ouro, impressive over drumrolls with a nice melody. The guitar solo's lightweight. Cello comes back on track 13, there's another oritental, sitarish start to track 14, Ouro returns for the final track and I'm sure audiences go away happy from gigs by bands touring modest venues with this sort of rural cosmopolitan repertoire. I like this better when I'm relaxed.


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