The son of a well-known jazz aficionado and part-time composer (who also occasionally acts in and directs movies), Kyle Eastwood deserves to be known for more than his famous parentage. Only his second album as a leader in a fairly long sideman career, Paris Blue kicks off with the phenomenal "Big Noise (From Winnetka)," a collision between acid jazz turntablism and hard bop in the mid-'50s Miles Davis style that works on both levels. (The more dance-oriented remix at album's end cutely emphasizes the oddball whistled hook but is otherwise an overlong, plodding mess.) Following that powerhouse opener, the bassist and his sidemen travel through more atmospheric realms (the lovely but dread-filled noir soundtrack "Marrakech"), an updated take on Creed Taylor-style fusion ("Muse," for muted trumpet and big blocky electric piano chords, is like In a Silent Way gone easy listening, in the best possible sense), and a variety of other styles. As both a bassist and a bandleader, Eastwood knows not to hog the spotlight: bass solos are rarely a good idea, and he wisely limits himself to one extended showcase at the introduction to the West Coast cool-style gem "Le Pont Royal." Overall, Paris Blue is a most pleasant surprise by a player who clearly both knows his history and respects his current musical surroundings.
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AllMusic Review by Stewart Mason