DELL/LILLINGER/WESTERGAARD – “Grammar II” (PLAIST, 2019)

“Grammar II” is a nice collaboration of three great jazz masters – all music was recorded by Christopher Dell (Vibraphone), Christian Lillinger (Drums) and Jonas Westergaard (Bass). The music is totally based on avant-garde jazz and free improvisation. All three musicians are the masters of their art – they have their own unique sound, specific and original way of improvising, inspiring and especially expressive playing manner, modern conception and innovative point of view. They make interesting, outrageous or even radical musical decisions to create an astonishing and exceptional sound. The music is filled with evocative ideas, extended playing techniques, spontaneous solos, sudden turns and impressive free improvisations.

All three musicians are the central figures of avant-garde jazz scene. They’re collaborating with numerous of avant-garde jazz masters, developping their own and suggestive playing style and don’t hesitate to integrate brave, ambitious, original and monumental decisions. The fundaments of their music are expressed in “Grammar II”. The music of this album is dynamic, virageous, full of spontaneous solos and gorgeous surprises. The musicians are making the first priority to emotions and expressions – their playing styles are especially affectionate and expressive. Wide range of moods, characters and expressions is expressed here – improvisers manage to pass through different moods in a subtle and delicat way. The contrasts are the main compounds of the album – that makes the sound more colorful, luminous and expressive. Using universal kit of playing techniques, musicians succesfully create an innovative, driving and rich instrumentation which is based on experiments, innovations, extended, home-made or specific ways of playing, special effects, strange timbres and expansion of usual technical abilities of the instruments. The sound of album always depends on harmonic basement – here it’s colorful mix of sharp disonances, soft consonances, peculiar timbres and strange chords. Different kinds of composing techniques are used here – some of them come from contemporary academical music, p.ex: repetitions, chord’s sequences and minimalistic samples, the other techniques are often created by improvisers and show their creativity, fantasy and the ability to create something new and exciting. As it was mentionned before, the music of these musicians is completely based on free improvisation and avant-garde jazz. There’s also many interesting stylistic allusions to other jazz styles or contemporary academical music – bebop, hard bop, post bop brings moving, complicated, intriguing, expressive, nervous or scandalous sound, cool or some elements related to early jazz styles, are the sources of harmony, comfort, stability and peace, that makes a relaxing and lyrical sound. Some episodes also have the relations with contemporary academical music – repetitions, ascetic minimalistic samples, monotonous tunes, stable bass line, evocative ideas, the main tendencies of instrumentation and other elements. That makes a bright, expressive, vital and interesting sound. It’s very nice to hear how musicians are corresponding to each other – where Jonas Vestergaard gets on perturbating and luminous bass culminations or driving riffs, Christian Lillinger’s active, moving and bright rhythmic section accompagnies it and makes the music more colorful and exciting. When the music gets silent and solemn – deep bass solos, lyrical contemplations, stable bass line, steady drums beats, subtle and colorful percussion accompagnied by tiny, gorgeous, elegant and colorful vibraphones by Christopher Dell. The musicians don’t stay too long in one mood – their music is moving and changing all the time. Finally they get on luminous culminations, wild attacks filled with shrieky evocative tunes, expressive melodies, driving riffs, breaking sessions, hot splashes, thrills, sparkling passages, full blasts of energy, radiant perturbations and impressive free improvisations. The music of this album has an expressive, vital, charming and driving sound.

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