Jukka Perko Streamline Jazztet
Led by pretty much the most lyrical alto saxists on earth, this band takes the chamber jazz torch lit by Paul Desmond in the 60’s and runs with it to a fresh new place that has a clearly Finnish atmosphere. On top of carefully picked covers and classic Finnish songs they do some tasty originals. The groove is highly atmospheric, sensual and smooth, but not sugary, and soloing simply impeccable. Check out their eponymous debut album on Blue Note!
Jukka Perko, who started out as a child prodigy specializing on Charlie Parker, has been at the forefront of Finnish jazz for a long time with his many bands. The most famous ones have been Hurmio (Ecstasy), which totally charmed the whole nation with its passionate readings of classic songs by a national hero, singer Olavi Virta. Also his adaptations of old hymns, so far three albums, have been excellent. The latest, Avara, takes a very modern approach with two guitarists with different styles. One of them is this band’s Teemu Viinikainen, a master of clean liquid swing, who according to Stuart Nicholson is among the 20 best jazz guitarists in the world. Ville Herrala is one of the most sought-after bassmen in Finland, while drummer Teppo Mäkynen figures as a world class groovalist, be it funk, soul, afro or jazz.