The 18-piece Tolvan Big Band, under the direction (since 1979) of altoist/flutist/arranger Helge Albin, is virtually unknown in the U.S. Based in Sweden, the orchestra is a little reminiscent of Bill Holman's in that they perform complex charts effortlessly and have a talented and challenging arranger as their leader. This Naxos CD, which is the band's first recording to be widely available in the U.S., consists of seven Albin originals. The music swings but is full of surprises and sounds quite modern. Among the key soloists (in addition to Albin) are trumpeter Peter Asplund, Cennett Jonsson on tenor and soprano, and Inge Petersson on tenor. Intriguing music worth a close listen.
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AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow