Kal Bergendahl Project: Parallels Chapter 1
Kenosha’s Kal Bergendahl Project lead listeners through a geographic journey on their latest album, Parallels Chapter 1. How else to interpret a collection that starts at “The Horizon” and ends up at “The Coast,” with a ravine, ridge, clearing and the break of dawn in between? However one hears it, bassist Bergendahl leads a septet that eschews the typical flash and sheen of funky fusion for a subtler, almost more traditionally jazzy approach. Bergendahl doesn’t abuse his position as bandleader, remaining a foundational presence that allows his saxophonists, trumpeter, keyboardist, drummer and electric guitarist to share the spotlight. As the group’s coastal arrival prompts some crowd noise like that heard on ’60s Ramsey Lewis Trio crossover singles, one wonders where Chapter 2 will lead.