Drummer and bandleader Kenneth Salters is a smooth operator of rhythm, textures and flow. The tunes on his debut album, Enter To Exit (Destinty Records), are executed with precision by his band Haven, a NYC-based group (featuring ace pianist Brad Whiteley) and they definitively move the needle on 9 alt-flavored modern jazz tunes. To his credit, Salters doesn’t amplify the beats over the sound of his righteous front-line of honor players (virtuoso saxophonist Myron Walden and rising-star Tivon Pennicott; trumpeter Matt Holman), but he’s not shy either. The well-rounded compositions give everyone an opportunity to shine while Salters conveys a fluid range of inventive time signatures, working his kit with impressive resolve. His originals hit the mark (“when You Find Out”), but two covers —Dolly Parton’s gospel-kissed “Halo and Horns” and pop-flavored “Stop The Sun” by Elysian Fields, a group that Salters also plays with — convey an overt emotional vibe that grounds this album and defines Haven as a significant band. (9 tracks; 61 minutes)

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