There are times when you put a disc in and right away know that you’re going to like it. That’s the way Led By You was the first time I heard it. This 2006 release is the second by Konstantin Klashtorni after his training in both the Ukraine and Holland. The passages here are smooth and flow into the others with ease without ever getting cluttered or boring. The melodies are catchy and are great to listen to.
“Back It Up” starts the set. The opening array of horns gives way to Klashtorni’s sax. The backbeat keeps it all going leading up to an infectious hook that is syncopated by those same horns again. The finale has him stretching up the scale somewhat as this one comes to an end. A steady brushed backbeat and layered keyboard set the stage for “So Lovely.” The mood is more laid back but Klashtorni’s sax continues to hum right along. Although not as much fun as the opener, this one is also laid out well. Light flute and guitar make the transition in the middle very interesting. The same beat continues “It Dews” before following up with the only vocal arrangement on the disc called “Haven’t Got The Heart” featuring Klashtorni on soprano.
The title track grabs you right off the start with a multi-layered sax intro giving way to a catch melody. The phrases here are well thought out and blend from chorus to refrain. The keyboards break it up nicely as a nice contrast. “On The Way” begins with a nice keyboard/horn intro followed by the up beat alto of Klashtorni. Here again the hook works and you’ll be humming along. “Ocean of Joy” is one of my favorites on the disc. I really like the way the phrasing moves from an extended note followed by three eighth notes to the next extension. There’s variations on that same theme throughout which makes it pleasing to listen to. Hit the repeat button if you want to. “Look Around” has a darker feel as he pulls out the soprano again. The keyboards have a “Culbertson” sound to them and serve as a constant companion to Klashtorni’s sax. The muted trumpet feels as if it’s in the corner of the darkness and is a nice addition. “Stay Romantic” is another that I think you’ll like a lot as the disc comes to a close. The phrases remind me of Michael Lington’s playing. This one’s upbeat and happy with a good feel to it and of course a great way to end the disc.
We all love great sax and it isn’t often that a new artist comes along to put out new music that is as nice as this. Catchy melodies never go out of style. Many of you are probably hearing of Konstantin Klashtorni for the first time. His music may be difficult to find (import) but in this age of Internet I’m sure you'll find a way. Tell your friends about it; after all they could be Led By You.