MATTHEW SHIPP/NATE WOOLEY – “WHAT IF?” (Rogue Art, 2019)

Front cover of the album WHAT IF?

The collaborations and projects of featured jazz masters always are exciting and interesting. Different playing techniques, individual styles, innovative point of view and driving playing manner are the main elements which are joined together. “WHAT IF?” is an example of great collective improvisation of pianist Matthew Shipp and trumpeter Nate Wooley. There’s no need to say, that the musicians are featured and centgral figures of international avant-garde jazz scene. Collaborations, projects and concerts with other famous improvisers is the main part of their activities. Musicians are using risky and adventurous decisions, fresh evocative ideas, fascinating sonoristic experiments and extended playing techniques to create an exclusive sound.

Creativity, drive, expression, risk and adventures make a great combo in “WHAT IF?”. Both improvisers are creating and exploring new fields of sound zone. They’re expanding the technical abilities of instruments, experimenting on various cases of musical language and integrate radical, expressive, modern and provocative decisions. Sound experiments, research of strange tunes and the will to get out of traditional sound’s zone are the main priorities of the musicians. An experimental, specific, home-made, weird, innovative and extended playing techniques, suggestive and original ways of improvising, special effects and ornaments of all ranges contain a multi-layed, bright and modern instrumental section. Surprises, contrasts, breaking sessions and booming awakening culminations are the main compounds of independent and expressive melody line. The melody line is kept by both musicians – all kinds of colors, tunes and expressions are brought into the musical pattern. All music is completely based on free improvisation and avant-garde jazz. The newest innovations, modern decisions and the roots of 1960’s avant-garde jazz make a great combo. Expressive, sharp, complicated and aggressive rhythms and improvisations also have the relations to bebop, post bop and other modern jazz styles. Pianist Matthew Shipp is creating a polyphonic and enchanting sound. His improvisations are made at the instant – spontaneous solos, surprises, dynamic turns and expressions are the main compounds of it. Remarkable terrific melodies meet tremendous wild culminations, breaking sessions, aggressive perturbating sequences, sharp tunes, furious riffs, hysteric frantic solos, flowing transcendental passages, virtuosic glamorous ornaments and booming explosions of energy. Pianist is improvising with passion and pleasure – his improvisations bring drive, expression, wildness and emotions of all ranges to the compositions. Hot growls, urgling solos, bursting thrills which pass to passionate melodies, glamorous riffs, vital and extremely fast passages or bursting full blasts – trumpeter Nate Wooley succesfully melts all these elements in one fusion. His music is dynamic, bright and contrasting – it’s filled with drive, creativity, passion and astonishing sonoristic experiments.

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Nick Fraser / Kris Davis / Tony Malaby with Ingrid Laubrock & Lina Allemano – “Zoning” (Astral Spirits, 2019)

“Zoning” was recorded by featured jazz figures – Nick Fraser (drums), Tony Malaby (saxophones), Kris Davis (piano), Ingrid Laubrock (tenor saxophone (tracks 1, 3, & 4 only) and Lina Allemano (trumpet (tracks 1, 3, & 4 only). The music is full of surprises, twists and strong contrasts. The musicians already have their own and original playing style. Their experimentative, fresh and evocative ideas bring life, brightness and passion to the compositions. Open free improvisations, driving melodies, wild passages, spontaneous solos, contrasting pieces and terrific riffs are the main compounds which accompagnie all the time the main musical pattern. All music is based on free improvisation and experimental jazz.

“Zoning” compositions are played in active and expressive mood. Here we can hear out fantastic jazz masters playing together – each of them has his own way of improvising, inspiring style and suggestive playing manner. Most part of the compositions is written for a trio – here we can listen to marvelous collective improvisations by Tony Malaby, Kris Davis and Nick Fraser. There are three tracks in this album where Ingrid Laubrock and Lina Allemano join the trio – that brings colorful, authentic, bright and active mood. Experimental ideas, sonoristic experiments, evocative decisions, experimental and home-made playing techniques, remarkable melodies and fantastic riffs are the main compounds which make an effort to luminous and multi-layed musical pattern and innovative instrumental section. The saxophonist Tony Malaby is the leading figure on most part of the compositions. His energy, creativity, innovative point of view and expressive ideas create a bright source of energy and drive. Full blasts of energy, tremendous culminations, growling and urgling solos, furious hysteric riffs, sharp aggressive tunes, passionate melodies, light flowing passages and original sonoristic experiments are gently joined together in his driving and moving free improvisations. Another great saxophonist Ingrid Laubrock joins him in tracks 1, 3 and 4. Her suggestive and modern playing manner, exclusive expressions, drive, hot thrills, moving and tremendous culminations, impressive riffs and all wide range of colors and tunes gently fit together with other instruments and beautifully colors the main melody line – makes it alive, bright, passionate and fresh. Trumpeter Lina Allemano also plays in these three tracks – vital and moving melodies, flowing transcendental passages, sharp tunes, aggressive riffs are accompagnied by angry growls, urgling furious blow outs, full blasts, strange timbres, sonoristic experiments or lyrical contemplations. All that makes an effort to moving, universal, polyphonic and independent melody line. The main melody line wouldn’t be so exciting, if there was no piano. Kris Davis is getting on adventurous improvisations – it’s based on frantic culminations, aggressive perturbating sequences, breaking sessions, playful, light, vital, flowing and passionate melodies which can turn out to furious, hysteric, urgent or lyrical, silent and peaceful samples. All these elements are gently combined together – pianist makes an effort to create an astonishing and expressive sound. A stable, bright, innovative and dynamic rhythmic section is created by Nick Fraser. Full blast of energy, a mix of vividness, expression and passion. Steady deep beats vs. frantic hysteric riffs and breaking sessions, silent pauses, meditative minimalistic samples which pass to flowing passages, rapid passages, tremendous culminations – that’s the base of this inspiring and modern rhythmic section.

Briggan Krauss – “Art of the Saxophone: The Lethe Lounge Sessions” (Iluso Records, 2019)

“Art of the Saxophone: The Lethe Lounge Sessions” was recorded by saxophonist and improviser Briggan Kraus. His music is completely based on free improvisation and experimental jazz. An improviser places two different pieces one against the other – he plays with contrasts, millions of different playing techniques and timbres. Fascinating, bright and original sonoristic experiments are the leading elements in his music – Briggan Kraus is fusing together traditional and experimental ways of playing, evocative ideas, drastic changes, wild culminations and gorgeous surprises. All these elements finally help an improviser to create exceptional and original sound.

“Art of the Saxophone: The Lethe Lounge Sessions” is filled with original ideas, fresh experiments andinventive decisions. Briggan Kraus is a talented saxophonist – he has mucj experience in instant spontaneous improvising and experimenting. The main musical pattern of his music is multi-colorful and universal – it has many layers and tunes highly contrasting to the other. Strong contrasts, bright original expressions and modern musical language are these elements which make an effort to original and passionate sound. Saxophonist has an inspiring and expressive playing manner – masterful virtuosity, flowing arpeggio, transcendental passages, splendid playing technique are mixed up to drive, passion, expression and thrills. Full blasts of energy accompagnied by tremendous thrills, hot spills, wild blow outs and exclamative riffs – that’s the base of these compositions. Improviser is using his virtuosity, creativity and original experimental ideas to create a contrasting and innovative sound. The mood changes are everywhere – from roaring culminations, wild riffs and passionate melodies the music suddenly comes down to calm lullabies, abstract solemn pieces, minimalistic samples in meditative mood, steady repetitive series and silent pauses. The contrast between these two sides is sudden and unpredictable – that effects dynamic, twisting and interesting sound. Although all music is completely based on free improvisation and experimental jazz, there are the relations to other music genres – contemporary academical music, academic avant-garde, experimental and minimalistic music, or even concrete and spectral music. A composer likes to get on adventurous culminations, deep sophistications, solemn contemplations and simply impressive free improvisations. Sonoristic experiments and expansion of technical instrumental abilities are used everywhere – that’s the main source of strange tunes, gorgeous timbres and innovative decisions. An evocative and modern instrumental section is created – it’s based on experimental, specific and home-made playing techniques which contain the main base of new and fresh sound. All album has an inspiring, expressive and exclusive sound.

ERRIES/VANDERSTRAETEN/VERHOEVEN – “IMPETUS” (a new wave of jazz, 2019)

Dirk Serries (acoustic guitars), Kris Vanderstraeten (percussion) and Martina Verhoeven (piano) – these are three featured figures of international avant-garde jazz scene. Musicians are playing and collaborating with dozens of other famous jazz masters. Their music is played with expression, drive, creativity and energy. All three musicians have their own style of improvising, sparkling virtuosity and the will to create new, exciting and modern sound. All their music is usually based on the basics of avant-garde jazz and free improvisation.

“IMPETUS” is the newest collaboration of these three musicians. It’s an exciting occassion to hear out all three improvisers playing together. An album is based on dynamic turns, passionate thrills, remarkable charming melodies and gorgeous timbres. Sonoristic experiments, coloristics and research of strange timbres are added to flowing impressive melodies, bright riffs and wild culminations. All these elements joined together create an effective, bright and original sound. The musicians are using their own ways of playing and experimental ideas to form an instrumental section. It’s original, vivid and modern, based on extravagant decisions, provocative, rare, radical or simply crazy ideas, unexpected surprises and special effects. An open form is chosed everywhere – the musicians are get along just fine and succesfully create adventurous, impressive and tremendous free improvisations. Telephatic corresponding to each other’s playing, immediate responses, spontaneous solos and instant improvising are the main elements of each composition. The stylistic variety is wide and organic – American, European and Scandinavian avant-garde jazz, newest innovations of experimental jazz and modern jazz sounds are connected together. The musicians frequently make a return to the roots of avant-garde jazz – the typical elements of 1960’s and 1970’s avant-garde jazz, classical forms and old ways of improvising, classical playing techniques and traditional forms are used here and gently fit together with fresh experiments and evocative ideas. Guitarist Dirk Serries is mixing up together dynamic solos, roaring thrills, heavy aggressive riffs, expressive melodies, flowing passages and special effects. Relaxing, calm, meditative or solemn pieces also are the parts of these compositions – it has an effective and touching sound. Improviser mixes up together his own style, unique sound, expression, drive and creatvity and finally makes an original sound, which is the key of the melody line. Guitars and piano brought together make an independent and incredibele melody line. Dynamic and vivid guitars are corresponding to piano. Martina Verhoeven’s music is a burst of energy, emotions and passions. Her music mostly played in bright and active mood – hot thrills, full blasts of energy, booming breaking culminations, driving solos, frantic perturbating sequences, special effects, sharp timbres, transcendental flowing passages and remarkable, simply fantastic melodies are the main compounds of piano improvisations. That makes a solid base of the melody line, brings colorful tunes and sounds to the background and effects an original and dynamic rhythmic section. Colorful timbres, special effects, exotic tunes, extended playing techniques, evocative radical decisions, sonoristic experiments, free improvisations and bright moving improvisations – that’s the base of Kris Vanderstraeten’s percussion’s section. The improvisations is the source of new colors, engaging free improvisations, driving culminations and surprising decisions. Whole album is created with fantasy, passion and drive – it has modern and touching sound.

 

Jérôme Noetinger and Anthony Pateras – “A Sunset For Walter LP” (Penultimate Press, 2019)

Jérôme Noetinger (multiple Revox tape machines) and Anthony Pateras (piano) are original and interesting musicians of academic avant-garde and experimental music scene. Evocative ideas, innovative point of view, rare, experimental and home-made playing techniques, fantastic sonoristic experiments are the keys of their music. Their music is inspiring, fresh, bright and dynamic – they use their own style, masterful virtuosity and creativity to create an astonishing sound. Their newest album “A Sunset For Walter LP” is a great result of their collaboration.

An album “A Sunset For Walter LP” is based on classical and innovative playing techniques combo, eclectic stylistic allusions, the basics of experimental music and free improvisation, open form and, of course, an organic combo of electronics and acoustics. Both musicians form the instrumental section which is based on radical decisions, rare combos, strange timbres, special effects and innovative ways of playing. Wide range of piano tunes is extracted by extended and innovative playing techniques. Dubs, inputs, glitch, drone, ambient, tape recordings, synth tunes, amplifications, sound machine’s records and other tunes are produced by using multiple Revox tape machines. The music has two different sides – dynamic, vivid, bright and emotional one, which is highly contrasting to depressed, ambient, heavy, synthesized and abstract kept by electronics. Pianist Anthony Pateras blends classical playing techniques, traditional expressions of modern classical music, sonoristic experiments, innovations and free improvisations. His music is somewhere between evocative contemporary academical music and abstract spontaneous free improvisations. By using his splendid virtuosity and expressive playing techniques, pianist dives in wide range of moods, characters and expressions. His music is turning and twisting all the time – from solemn pieces, repetitive soft chords, minimalistic samples accompagnied by strange timbres, electronics and special effects, it goes straight on expressive, moving and thrilling episodes. Hot thrills, bright accents, strong contrasts, sudden turns, transcendental passages, passionate remarkable melodies and spontaneous solos – these elements bring active and moving sound to the compositions. Pianist doesn’t hesitate to make a spontaneous, radical or provocative decisions – that’s why his music has rich, inspiring, surprising and dynamic sound. Revox tape machines by Jérôme Noetinger are the keys of the other side of the album – dark, sophisticated, sometimes depressed, cold or noisy.  Jérôme Noetinger is experimenting on instrumental section – he’s using eclectic stylistic allusions, extracting gorgeous, strange and original timbres, mixing together different electronics and playing techniques and finally creates an enchanting, interesting and extraordinary sound. The music of this album has dynamic, modern and innovative sound.

Quartett Non Locality – “Quartett Non Locality” (Multikulti Project, 2019)

“Quartett Non Locality” was recorded by “Quartett Non Locality” which is formed by Sarah Claman (violin), Dominik Strycharski (blockflutes/recorders), Zbigniew Chojnacki (accordion, live electronics) and Ramon Prats (drums). A quartet has its own and original sound – the improvisers are full of inventive decisions, experimental ideas, eclectic fusions and unique sound. Inspiring and expressive playing manner, fantastic virtuosity, drive and modern point of view also are very important compounds. Musicians don’t hesitate to make adventurous, original and evocative musical decisions, provocative turns, bright contrasts and sudden turns to one or another music style. Their music is a mix of drive, passion, creativity, fresh innovative ideas and original point of view.

“Quartett Non Locality” is based on interesting free improvisations played in expressive and active mood. Four improvisers are getting on brave attacks, ambitious provocative ideas and expand the main abilities of their instruments. Splendid virtuosity, charming flowing passages, gorgeous ornaments and all ranges of coloristics accompagnied each composition. The music is based on open form, free improvisation and multi-layed musical pattern. The experimental, specific, home-made, extravagant and innovative playing techniques along with special effects and sound experiments form an independent and simply impressive instrumentation. The musicians are fusing together different streams of avant-garde jazz – European and American avant-garde jazz, the roots of 1960’s avant-garde jazz and music of its pioneers are connected to hysteric, expressive and complicated modern jazz. That’s the base of whole album – there’s also some relations to contemporary academical and experimental music, academic avant-garde and electronics. That mostly touches the instrumental section – musicians are using very well-known and effective ways of improvising, traditional expressions by mixing it together with experimental and their very own playing techniques. All music is written for an interesting combo – violin, blockflutes, recorders, accordion, live electronics and drums. So that’s not just original and inspiring compositions, but also an organic fusion of electronics and acoustics. Violin keeps the base of the melody line – its shrieky tunes go straight to bright passionate thrills, vibrant culminations and flowing passages. Fabulous expressive melody line is accompagnied by strange timbres, special effects, sonoristic experiments and gorgeous ornaments. Sometimes the music is calm, relaxing and steady, sometimes – it’s sparkling, nervous, hysteric and expressive, vibrant and powerful or frantic and radiant. Violin improvisations certainly are the keys of the melody line. Blockflutes and recorders bring soft, light, vivid and passionate sound. Its tunes are mostly as the coloristics, but also brightly illustrate whole melody line. Whistling, buzzing or trembling solos are connected to shrieky hollowing tunes, passionate melodies, lyrical pieces, minimalistic samples or spontaneous solos. All that makes an effort to inspiring and emotional sound. Accordion is the source of awakening, extravagant and exotic sound. Its independent melodies are full of striking riffs, attacking rises, passionate awakening culminations, strange timbres, sonoristic experiments made at the instant and impressive free improvisations. An interesting and modern fusion with live electronics is made – glitch, ambient, drone, sonic system’s experiments, computer sounds, special effects, synth tunes, amplifications, inputs, dubs and all kinds of other playing techniques are used here to make an extraordinary, modern and evocative sound. Drums section is bright and independent. Expressive thrills, driving sessions, breaking culminations, modern complicated rhythms, frottings, tappings, strange timbres, modern ways of playing, special effects and sonoristic experiments contain the main base of it. All album has a bright, awakening and innovative sound.

SATOKO FUJII/Satoko Fujii Orchestra New York – “Entity” (Libra Records, 2019)

cd jacket "Entity"

“Entity” is a new album recorded by Satoko Fujii and her “Orchestra New York”. An ensemble is famous for interesting, evocative and innovative improvisations where dozens of different forms, moods, characters, ways of playing and improvising are joined together. All music is based on synthesis of basics of avant-garde jazz, traditional Japan improvisational music, modern and contemporary jazz styles, American avant-garde jazz and the newest innovations of experimental jazz. All the members of ensemble are the masters of their art – it’s Oscar Noriega, Briggan Krauss (alto sax), Ellery Eskelin, Tony Malaby (tenor sax), Andy Laster (baritone sax), Natsuki Tamura, Herb Robertson, Dave Ballou (trumpet), Curtis Hasselbring, Joe Fiedler (trombone), Nels Cline (guitar), Stomu Takeishi (bass) and Ches Smith (drums).

The newest work of this ensemble – “Entity” – has bright and passionate sound. Whole album is made with passion, creativity and expression. Musicians are taking all the mesures to create an original and exceptional sound – their masterful virtuosity, extended playing techniques and innovative ways of playing are mixed together with especially expressive playing manner, inspiring style and unique sound. Open form, free improvisation and sonoristic experiments made everyhwhere – these elements also make an effort to original and bright sound. The compositions are based on impressive instrumental section – experimental and innovative ways of playing, same as extended and specific playing techniques, are the basics of it. Expressive, sparkling and independent melody line is created and kept by reeds and brasses. Hot thrills, sparkles, sudden attacks and bright contrasts are the main compounds of it. Saxophone’s section is vivid, energetic and bright. Five imiprovisers have their own point of view and the way they improvise, is individual and different from the others. Musicians don’t hesitate to use original, provocative, weird or strange ways of playing, drastic turns, sudden changes and immediate responses to each other’s playing. Oscar Noriega, Briggan Krauss, Ellery Eskelin, Tony Malaby and Andy Laster do great job – their improvisations are the mixes of wild blowing culminations, roaring riffs, striking thrills, full blasts of energy, glamorous flowing passages, all kinds of gorgeous tiny ornaments, special effects and strange timbres which are highly contrasting to deep, stable, vibrant and repetitive tunes. Of course, the centre of this section is based on the melodies – driving, surprising, expressive and exciting, filled with all ranges of colors, moods and tunes. Trumpet players Natsuki Tamura, Herb Robertson and Dave Ballou bring drive, energy and expression to the compositions. Their music gently fit together with trombonists Curtis Hasselbring’s and Joe Fiedler’s improvisations. These improvisers together succesfully create an incredible, strong and vibrant brass section. Traditional Japanese music and its harmony, authentic ornamentation and rhythmic are mixed together with the roots of 1960’s avant-garde jazz, spontaneous solos, instant improvising and impressive free improvisations. Blowing riffs, cracking deep trombones meet energetic, hysteric, wild, aggressive and bursting trumpets. Growls, wainings, buzzing and urgling solos, light flowing passages, silent subtle pieces heading directly to loud attacks, wild culminations, sparkling riffs and transcendental passages. All the music is illustrated by huge range of special effects, strange timbres and sonoristic experiments. Guitarist Nels Cline is mixing together heavy riffs, vibrant culminations, expressive melodies and spontaneous free improvisations. His music is passing through all kinds of moods – from ambient minimalistic pieces, repetitive series ir goes to dreamy peaceful samples, expressive vivid melodies, tremendous riffs, vibrant terrific culminations and virtuosic passages. Bass by Stomu Takeishi also is the synthesis between Asian and Western Europe music. The basics fo avant-garde jazz, experimental ideas, classical chords of Western Europe harmony are fused together with exotic and authentic harmony of Japanese music and its rhythms. Bass is the source fo evocative ideas, original coloristics, all kinds of timbres, special effects and inspiring improvisations. Fantastic drums section is created by Ches Smith. It’s a mix of aggressive hard bop, modern and extravagant post bop, hysteric complicated bebop or calm steady cool – all these elements are gently combined together and finally head directly to passionate improvisations, breaking sessions, wild culminations and spontaneous surprises. The music of this album has an exciting, bright and interesting sound.