C. Michael Bailey, All About

The flute as the lead instrument in any jazz combo relies on an empathic and sensitive rhythm section that will not overpower the wind instrument’s delicate voice (Jethro Tull’s Ian Anderson notwithstanding). Flautist Andrea Brachfeld happens upon a dandy rhythm section in pianist Bill O’Connell, bassist Harvie S and drummers Jason Tiemann and T Portinho. That said, Brachfeld is more than able to kick out the jams, evidenced by her barnburning solo on Jobim’s “Waters of March.” The flautist is perfectly capable of cooking things off, as she does with Jobim’s lithesome “Amparo.” “Never Let Me Go” is given careful consideration, O’Connell introducing the song quietly, allowing Brachfeld to switch to alto flute, summoning those dark colors that pitch provides.

Brachfeld’s “Girl from Ipanema” is performed at a brisk and precise pace, with velocity great enough to evaporate the humidity of the original Brachfeld’s soloing is robust and forward-thinking. Guitarist Roni Ben-Hur sands the edges from the rush. The flautist’s original compositions with pianist O’Connell, meld seamlessly with the Brazilian fare. “Triste E Solitaria” and “Espaço Aberto” reveal the balladic and heated command of composition possessed by Brachfeld. Brazilian Whispers is an exceptional Bossa Nova instrumental recording, well conceived and executed.

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