Enrapture (Capri Records)

Ken Peplowski

Released February 16, 2016

DownBeat Four-and-a-Half-Star Review






According to Ken Peplowski, the quartet on “Enrapture” is the best group he’s ever worked with. “It’s a joy to be able to go in any direction you want to go in musically, and know that everyone will just fall in with you. Almost every song was made in one take. We really felt that we captured the spontaneity of a “live” performance on what were some challenging pieces of music. This is the culmination of sifting through a year’s worth of material that best highlights this band. We played as many live performances as we could leading up to the recording date. I care deeply about these songs and hope I’ve successfully conveyed that to the listeners.”

Track Listing:

1. The Flaming Sword (Duke Ellington) 06:37

2. An Affair to Remember (Harold Adamson / Leo McCarey / Harry Warren) 05:18

3. Oh, My Love (John Lennon / Yoko Ono) 02:28

4. Cheer Up, Charlie (Leslie Bricusse / Anthony Newley) 05:19

5. I’ll Follow My Secret Heart (Noël Coward) 04:02

6. Enrapture (Herbie Nichols) 04:46

7. Twelve (Peter Erskine) 05:42

8. Vertigo Scene D’Amour/Madeleine (Love Music From “Vertigo”) (Jeff Alexander / Bernard Herrmann / Larry Orenstein) 06:54

9. When October Goes (Barry Manilow / Johnny Mercer) 04:44

10. Willow Tree (Andy Razaf / Fats Waller) 07:37


Ken Peplowski: clarinet, tenor saxophone

Ehud Asherie: piano

Martin Wind: bass

Matt Wilson: drums, percussion

Recorded February 24, 2015, at Trading 8’s

Produced by Ken Peplowski and Thomas Burns

Engineer: Chris Sulit

Mastered by David Glasser

Cover Photo: Des McMahon


You’re bound to be surprised and probably pleased by the varied repertoire on this excellent album from reedist Ken Peplowski, which ranges from lovely ballads and mainstream bop tunes to Dixieland thumpers and modern jazz. Ever hear among Duke Ellington’s copious compositions something titled “The Flaming Sword”? It’s a lively, calypso-ish piece that the quartet plays with glee. Fats Waller and Andy Razaf’s medium-tempo blues “Willow Tree” receives a similar treatment, played here with deep respect and liveliness by a spirited group that includes Ehud Asherie on piano, Martin Wind on bass and Matt Wilson on drums. On Enrapture, Peplowski’s fourth album for Capri, the leader asserts himself as a fine reedman, with an almost ethereal tone on saxophone and clarinet. He exhibits smooth, elongated phrasing, a keen rhythmic sense and an extraordinary musical diversity. Examples of his topnotch playing include a warm, romantic tenor solo on “An Affair Yo Remember” and a rich clarinet statement on John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s “Oh, My Love.”

The album features two stunners in drummer Peter Erskine’s edgy “Twelve” and the classical-oriented “Vertigo Scene D’Amour (Love Scene From Vertigo),” a gorgeous melody featuring Peplowski’s deep clarinet sound. Another surprise: Barry Manilow and Johnny Mercer’s “When October Goes.” This beautiful version makes it OK to admit you like this song.

Bob Protzman (DownBeat)