The Dutch jazz crew known as the New Cool Collective have more than two decades behind them in their quest to deliver a pleasing intermingling of jazz, Latin, salsa and Afrobeat grooves. Add in legendary sax virtuoso Thierno Koité — the legendary Senegalese artist last heard on the latest Orchestra Baobab release — and you have a project worth talking about.
Running at a short yet sweet 10 tracks, New Cool Collective Big Band featuring Thierno Koité bobs and weaves through worldly rhythms with a crisp and deliberate swagger. Opening big band number "Myster Tier" brings the brass heat before unfolding into a seasoned salsa beat and "Padee" takes its musical cues from old-styled West Indian calypso, while "Pambiche" brings an ample amount of Afrobeat into the mix. Koité gets his opportunity to truly shine — not that he wasn't doing that already — by soloing on the straight-up jazz feeler "Thierno."
The closing number, the Latin-influenced "Rumbon," comes off a bit routine, but there's enough to like elsewhere here that it hardly matters. New Cool Collective Big Band featuring Thierno Koité does justice to both the various genres and the band's featured saxophonist. (Dox Records)