lunes, 23 de octubre de 2017

Björn Meyer - Provenance (ECM 2017)

There is a distinguished tradition of solo bass albums on ECM, but Provenance is the first to be devoted to the electric bass guitar. Björn Meyer, Swedish-born and Swiss-based, has shaped a unique voice for his instrument inside the most diverse contexts, working alongside Persian harpist and singer Asita Hamidi, Swedish nyckelharpa player Johan Hedin, and Tunisian oud master Anouar Brahem. For a decade he was a member of Nik Bärtsch’s Ronin, in which his bass guitar was frequently the lead instrument.

His solo work is concerned with the experience of sound in acoustic spaces: “Even though the instrument is technically non-acoustic, the music is deeply influenced by the properties of the space where it is played. The many different ways in which acoustics affect my compositions and improvisations have always been sources of surprise and inspiration.

There is definitely a second member in this solo project – the room!” The participating room on Provenance is the highly responsive Auditorio Stello Molo RSI in Lugano, its rich acoustics helping to bring out all the fine detail in Meyer’s subtle playing.

1. Aldebaran
2. Provenance
3. Three Thirteen
4. Squizzle
5. Trails Crossing
6. Traces Of A Song
7. Pendulum
8. Banyan Waltz
9. Pulse
10. Dance
11. Garden Of Silence
12. Merry-Go-Round

Björn Meyer Bass Guitar [6-String Electric And Acoustic Bass Guitars]

Fredrik Kronkvist: Afro-Cuban Supreme (feat. Jason Marsalis, Eliel Lazo & Miriam Aïda) CONNECTIVE RECORDS 2017

Alto saxophone star Fredrik Kronkvist delivers his eclectic mix of Afro-Cuban rhythms and Coltrane inspired jazz and in an adventurous and colorful musical experience. New views on Latin-Jazz gives us an explosive rhythm fiesta that touches both body and soul.

Inspired by Dizzy Gillespie’s idea of bringing together people, music and rhythms from different continents and countries, the award-winning and Swedish Grammy nominated alto saxophonist Fredrik Kronkvist has created a diverse mix of Afro-Cuban rhythms and Coltrane-influenced jazz with his new group Afro-Cuban Supreme.

On the occasion of Dizzy’s 100-year anniversary in 2017 Fredrik Kronkvist releases the album Afro-Cuban Supreme with superstars Jason Marsalis(USA) on drums, conga virtuoso Eliel Lazo(CUB) and Miriam Aïda(MAR/SWE) on vocals.

The music ranges from legendary songs like A Night in Tunisia, Afro Blue and Manteca in eventful arrangements to exciting original compositions with contemporary approaches to timeless Latin Jazz.

1 Intro - Tierra Africana part I (feat. Eliel Lazo & Jason Marsalis) 2:30
2 A Love Supreme - Acknowledgement (feat. Eliel Lazo & Jason Marsalis) 5:29
3 A Night In Tunisia (feat. Eliel Lazo & Jason Marsalis) 5:46
4 Caravan (feat. Eliel Lazo & Jason Marsalis) 7:08
5 Conga Interlude (feat. Eliel Lazo & Jason Marsalis) [Interlude #1] 1:27
6 Afro Blue (feat. Eliel Lazo, Jason Marsalis & Miriam Aïda) 4:20
7 Satellite (feat. Eliel Lazo & Jason Marsalis) 5:38
8 Manteca (feat. Eliel Lazo & Jason Marsalis) 6:34
9 Naima (feat. Eliel Lazo, Jason Marsalis & Miriam Aïda) 6:04
10 Gillespiana (feat. Eliel Lazo & Jason Marsalis) 5:30
11 Be-Bop (feat. Eliel Lazo & Jason Marsalis) 4:24
12 Tierra Africana part II (feat. Eliel Lazo & Jason Marsalis) 1:53
13 On Green Dolphin Street (feat. Eliel Lazo & Jason Marsalis) 5:28
14 Yemaya (feat. Eliel Lazo & Jason Marsalis) 5:21
15 Prelude to Eternal Light (feat. Eliel Lazo & Jason Marsalis) [Interlude #5] 1:31
16 Eternal Light (feat. Eliel Lazo, Jason Marsalis & Miriam Aïda) 6:10
17 Outro - Acknowledgement (feat. Eliel Lazo & Jason Marsalis) 2:02

Fredrik Kronkvist – saxophones, flutes and bass clarinet
Miriam Aïda – vocals
Martin Sjöstedt – piano
Johnny Åman – bass
Eliel Lazo – congas
Jason Marsalis – drums

Dave Douglas - Little Giant Still Life (2017)

Little Giant Still Life is an exhilarating new album from trumpeter and composer Dave Douglas featuring five brass players and drums. Much of this music was inspired by the American painter Stuart Davis and the music explodes with the same bright colors and excitement of Davis’ works. 

Combining the acclaimed talents of brass ensemble The Westerlies – known for their work with Fleet Foxes, their repertoire of original compositions, and interpretations of the music of Wayne Horvitz – and the soulful young drummer Anwar Marshall (Fresh Cut Orchestra, Kurt Rosenwinkel), with Douglas’ inspired compositional vision, the album is full of grooving, swinging, lyrical new jazz. 

What makes Little Giant Still Life special is the communal music making that the six musicians are able to generate. The sextet unfurls a new view of jazz brass band music with sophistication and heart.

1. Champion 05:58
2. Arcade 04:33
3. Men and Machine 03:26
4. Little Giant Still Life 05:14
5. Percolator 04:10
6. Your Special Day 03:22
7. Bunting 02:39
8. Swing Landscape 07:16
9. The Front Page 05:36
10. Colonial Cubism 03:58
11. Codetta 03:32
12. Worlds Beyond the Sky 03:27

The Westerlies:
Riley Mulherkar, trumpet
Zubin Hensler, trumpet
Andy Clausen, trombone
Willem de Koch, trombone 

Anwar Marshall, drums

Production Credits:
Executive Producer: Dave Douglas
Recorded on December 6, 2016 at the Hotel Samurai
Engineered by Geoff Countryman
Mixed and mastered Tyler McDiarmid
Cover photo by Austin Nelson
Band photos by Russell Moore
Design by Lukas Frei

Thomas Fonnesbæk & Justin Kauflin - Synesthesia (STORYVILLE RECORDS 2017)

New project from jazz bassist and household name on the Danish jazz stage, Thomas Fonnesbæk, with American composer and pianist prodigy, Justin Kauflin. 

Fonnesbæk himself recalls the beginning of the new project like this:

“My first meeting with Justin Kauflin was in Copenhagen in the spring of 2015 at Jazzhouse Montmartre, together with his childhood friend and drummer, Billy Williams. When Montmartre's former music director Christian Brorsen introduced me to them, I immediately recognized how talented they were and that Justin's pianistic virtuosity and musicality would be a most treasured musical experience. 

Besides being a meeting between Justin and myself, it was a meeting of cultures with many similarities and many inspiring differences that we could express through sound in the universal language of music. We quickly discovered we also shared a neurological commonality in that we both have synesthesia, which in our case means seeing sounds as colors with our mind's eye. Synesthesia has also ended up being the title of this album.”

The young jazz superstar Justin Kauflin is a pianist, composer and producer. His international recognition proves its worth on this album: He is a precise and playful pianist, but always laid-back and elegant. His style mingles perfectly with the quieter Scandinavian Fonnesbæk and together, their understated approach makes a powerful statement in itself. It’s Kauflin’s simplicity and skill that impresses the listener, his eloquence on the piano never throwing the audience off, but always inviting them to sharpen their senses to the smallest of details. 

This is Fonnesbæk’s third duo album, recorded over the course of two days in beautiful surroundings in Sweden. Some of the original compositions were prepared in advance and some were improvised on the spot. It’s a rather untraditional jazz album in the sense that the bass takes the lead with only a piano as support. Nevertheless, the collaboration between just two instruments doesn’t lack any support, and rather Fonnesbæk & Kauflin create an ambience for thoughtfulness and sensitivity in a aerial soundscape that lets you appreciate every small detail.

It's All Right With Me
For No One
Panic Attack
Nigerian Marketplace

Thomas Fonnesbæk: Double bass
Justin Kauflin: Piano

Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah - The Emancipation Procrastination (ROPEADOPE RECORDS 2017)


‘I’m not interested in harming anyone. I have a responsibility as an artist to create a space where people feel welcome. When I walk outside this hotel room, that is not the reality. There is a difference when music is made with love. When people come into my space they are going to feel that. We are trying to figure out a way to treat each other better. We are all responsible for healing each other.‘ (Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah).

Thus begins the final chapter of The Centennial Trilogy : three full length albums that reflect deeply on the history of Jazz. The third album - The Emancipation Procrastination - deals directly with the social and political issues of the day. Rather than descend into identity politics, Adjuah sees in New Orleans many disparate cultures in one space being underserved and exploited.

domingo, 22 de octubre de 2017

EABS - Repetitions (Letters to Krzysztof Komeda) ASTIGMATIC RECORDS 2017

EABS "Repetitions (Letters to Krzysztof Komeda)" - An Eastern-European response to the Jazz Renaissance

The growth in popularity of jazz music in recent years has been described as a renaissance or new chapter for the genre. Attracting new audiences has seen a growth in acclaim for international artists including Kamasi Washington & The West Coast Get Down collective or BadBadNotGood. This resurgence has also been felt within british jazz scene. Musicians such as Yussef Kamaal, Shabaka Hutchings, Ruby Rushton, Nubya Garcia or Moses Boyd have put a new stamp on jazz music by fusing elements of classic jazz with modern sounds. Polish septet, EABS applies a similar philosophy to their music, blending traditional Polish Jazz with sounds from other genres, thus creating a new and personal interpretation of modern jazz.

EABS debut album entitled “Repetitions (Letters To Krzysztof Komeda)” is a dedication to Polish Jazz legend Krzysztof Komeda. This album is an analysis of conscientiously selected compositions by Komeda between 1962-1967. EABS explores some of Komeda’s lesser-known compositions featured in ballet etudes, movies, short films, documentaries, animations and compositions illustrating Polish poems recited in German. 

Carefully chosen compositions, the background of the movies for which the music had been written and Marek Pędziwiatr’s lyrics all add up to “Repetitions” being some kind of a concept album about the condition of the human soul in the 21st century. The questions one may ask might be similar to those which could have been asked by the artists witnessing post-war debris: will history come full circle? Lack of knowledge, flourishing idiocracy, aggression, aiming for conflicts, shortage of community spirit and love may lead to another doomsday. Perhaps we simply aren’t able to see the impending doom now… Just like in a poem by Czesław Miłosz, “A Song on the End of the World”, to which Krzysztof Komeda wrote “Waltzing Beyond”. 

EABS have created their unique compositions by employing an approach exercising the idea of “reconstruction from deconstruction” where sampling and looping are merged with jazz improvisations. The injection of hip-hop, jungle, funk, gospel and electronic music add a futuristic tone to the tracks. However EABS have made a conscious decision to ensure their nod to Komeda enables the spirit of the Polish Jazz to remain alive. Michal Urbaniak another Polish Jazz legend is the only guest on the album. His violin can be heard on the track “Free Witch And No Bra Queen/ Sult”.

1. Knowledge (Introdukcja do Etiudy Baletowej) 04:08
2. Perły i Dukaty XIV / Repetition 10:55
3. Private Conversation VIII 06:16
4. Niekochana 05:07
5. Pingwin VI 07:18
6. Free Witch and No Bra Queen / Sult ft. Michał Urbaniak 05:52
7. God is Love (Bariera XIII) 04:59
8. Step Into the Light (Wiklinowy Kosz) 10:54
9. Waltzing Beyond (The Song on the Day the World Ends) 03:48

Marek Pędziwiatr - piano, synths, vocal
Vojto Monteur - guitar
Paweł Stachowiak - bass
Jakub Kurek - trumpet
Olaf Węgier - tenor sax
Marcin Rak - drums
Spisek Jednego - turntables

Uwe Oberg / Rudi Mahall / Michel Griener - Lacy Pool__2 (LEO RECORDS 2017)

Lacy Pool is a small group of musicians whom Uwe Oberg picks to unlock Steve Lacy's compositions. Why no bass? Uwe Oberg: "That never was a question. I wanted the band to function unlike a jazz quartet and it should not have a soprano sax. Now Lacy's pieces were mine and ours, and it got easier and easier, everything fell into place. The clarity, the repeating motifs, the collage approach, the deconstruction, the flow. What fun!"

Field (Spring)
Blues for Aida
Jazz ab 40

Gilles Barikosky - Weeping Willow (2017)