Kane Kalas, High Hopes Review
Modern-Day Crooner: High Hopes Bridges the Gap Between Classic and Contemporary Jazz
by Constance Tucker
High Hopes by Kane Kalas is a genuinely noteworthy addition to the catalog of the jazz crooner, as it seamlessly bridges contemporary, classic, and heartfelt homage. Kalas, embodying the role of a modern-day crooner, brings a fresh, unique sound to the table while preserving deep respect for the music of the Golden Age.
His distinctive, richly-toned voice takes center stage from the opening track, “Take Me Out to the Ballgame,” captivating listeners immediately with its warmth and clarity. A testament to his understanding of the nuances of classic melodies, Kalas presents his rendition of “All of Me” in a way that pays tribute to the greats while asserting his own unique musical identity.
This contemporary crooner’s versatility shines throughout the album, from the romantic tunes “French Foreign Legion” and “Luck Be a Lady” to collaborative, playful pieces like “Guys and Dolls” and “Fugue for Tinhorns.” He also successfully introduces a choral element on the titular track “High Hopes,” featuring the Philadelphia Boys Choir and Chorale, which adds a joyous, inspiring dimension to his sound.
Highlights like “If Ever I Would Leave You” reveal a more intimate, sensual side to Kalas’s music, while his rendition of “The Way You Look Tonight” showcases his expansive vocal range and impressive falsetto, deftly exhibiting his classical training.
“Bridge Over Troubled Water” stands as a gripping rendition of a gospel-rooted classic, displaying Kalas’s vocal prowess, while the closing track, “Goodnight My Someone,” finishes the album on a high note of elegance and clarity.
With High Hopes, Kalas solidifies his place as a modern crooner with a distinctive style, paying homage to the past while carving out his own space in the classic vocal jazz scene. His mastery over the American Standards genre is unmistakable, making this album a promising debut from a uniquely talented artist. The future indeed holds High Hopes for Kalas.