Large Unit – “Selected Tracks 2013 – 2017” (PNL Records, 2017)

“Selected Tracks 2013-2017” – it’s a new album [layed by one of the best avant-garde jazz ensembles “Large Unit”. Compositions from various albums and performances are improvised and played different than in earlier collective albums. “Large Unit” ensemble consists of talented and experienced jazz masters – Thomas Johansson (trumpet), Mats Äleklint (trombone), Per Åke Holmlander (tuba), Børre Mølstad (tuba),
Julie Kjær (alto saxophone, flute), Kasper Værnes (alto saxophone), Klaus Ellerhusen Holm (Bb clarinet, alto and baritone saxophone), Kristoffer Berre Alberts (tenor and alto saxophone), Ketil Gutvik (guitar), Tommi Keränen (electronics), Lasse Marhaug (electronics and turntable), Jon Rune Strøm (electric and double bass), Christian Meaas Svendsen (electric and souble bass), Andreas Wildhagen (drums and percussion), Paal Nilssen-Love (drums and percussion), Paulinho Bicolor (cuica), Célio De Carvalho (pandeiro) and Christian Obermayer (live sound). Compositions played by this ensemble have a remarkable, expressive and effective sound. Masterfully combined acustic instruments and electronics, strange noises and timbres, creative and emotional solos and rigorous, energetic collective improvisations. Musicians try out many different music styles and playing techniques. Their talent, original improvising and novatoric playing creates modern and different sound.

Album “Selected Tracks 2013 – 2017” consists of 6 compositions. All of these compositions were played and recorded in other recently released albums of ensemble. So this album is a retrospective of ensemble work these past 4 years. All compositions have many different styles, contrasts and are full of musical experiments. Different and contrasting music styles combination, virtuosic and rigorous solos by musicians of ensemble, subtle used electronics, very dynamic rhytmic and high variety of percussion – these elements are the basics of compositions. Each musician is improvising individually and different from each other, but all melodies, timbres, rhytms and other music elements organically and gently combines into one composition. Musicians also pay high attention for musical experiments – each of ensemble members try out different, novatoric and extended playing techniques. All compositions in this album have remarkable, effective and original sound like all others compositions played by “Large Unit”.



Stephan Crump, Ingrid Laubrock and Cory Smythe – “Planktonic Finales’ (Intakt, 2017)

“Planktonic Finales” – that’s a new album played by three great avant-garde jazz experimentators. Album compositions were played by Stephan Crump (bass), Ingrid Laubrock (saxophone) and Cory Smythe (piano). These musicians had been collaborated many times in the past. Their performanses, collective improvisations had evocative, interesting and original sound. Stephan Crump and Ingrid Laubrock had been released several albums in 2016. Ingrid Laubrock albums “Ubatuba” and “Serpentines” are full of unexpected styles, sounds and musical experiments. All three musicians are very famous in avant-garde jazz scena. They are famous for original sounds, free, creative and wild improvisations, and novatoric playing technique.

Album consists of 11 compositions. All of them have interesting sound and are combined of various music elements. The variety of rhytm, fast and rigorous saxophone and piano melodies, various novatoric musical effects, unusual sounds and timbres and expressive melodies – that’s the main elements of compositions. Improvisations are very different from each other – some of them are slow, soft and subtle sounds with melancholic saxophone solos and bass melodies. After them there are fast, sharp and rigorous collective improvisations there musicians try out various extended playing techniques and search new, unheard timbres and sounds. Stephan Crump bass improvisations have the high variety of music elements. These improvisations are full of contrasts. Musician improvises masterfully and cobines the high variety of rhytms, timbres, sounds and melodies. Saxophonist Ingrid Laubrock improvisations are wonderful – just like in other albums, she plays creatively, bravely try out new and novatoric playing techniques and other elements. Her improvisations sometimes are sharp, rigorous and fast and sometimes- silent, mysterious and melancholic. Pianist Cory Smythe improvisations give  the harmonic and melodic basic to the compositions. The harmony of the compositions is very modern and novatoric, full of many different accords and sounds. The musician improvises very virtuosic, emotional and expressive – the improvisations gently combined with other instruments sounds. Talented jazz musicians, expressive and novatoric playing, the best quality of sounds and high variety of music elements give us very good and interesting album.

Ken Vandermark – “Shelter” (Catalytic Sound, 2017)

“Shelter” – it’s the newest album played by avant-garde jazz improviser, composer and saxophonist Ken Vandermark and his ensemble. The album had been played by four great jazz musicians: Ken Vandermark (reeds), Steve Heather (drums & crackle box),  Jasper Stadhouders (electric bass & guitar) and Nate Wooley (trumpet). All these musicians had been improvising many times in past in different projects. All of them have original and expressive playing technique and improvising style. Their music is full of novatoric and creative musical experiments, strange sounds and timbres, electronics, computer sounds and other special effects combining with traditional instruments.

“Shelter” consists of 9 compositions. All of them are based on contrasts and various music elements combined in one composition. Expresive, very fast and evocative reeds and guitar solos are full of virtuosic elements, strange noises, extyended and novatoric playing techniques and sound effects. Dynamic and contrasting rhytmic, fast and active drum solos, silent one or several instruments duos are also the main elements of these compositions. The musicians are improvising free, creative and masterfully. Their melodies and other music elements has many different sounds and timbres and are full of surprises. Expressive and original sound of traditional instruments are subtly combined with electronics – cracker box, various computer effects and electronic music elements. All these different and very contrasting elements are masterfully combined in one composition. Effective and novatoric sound, masterful players and creative musical experiments bring this album to one of the best albums released in this year.

Rob Mazurek – “Chants And Corners” (Clean Feed, 2017)

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“Chants And Corners” is a new album played by composer, free jazz improviser and cornetist Rob Mazurek and his ensemble. Compositions of the album were played by Rob Mazurek (modular synth, sampler, cornet, piano on Android Sun), Mauricio Takara (drums), Guilherme Granado  (keyboards, synth, sampler, electronics), Thomas Rohrer  (rabeca, flutes, soprano saxophone, electronics) and Philip Somervell  (piano, prepared piano). All these musicians are talented and creative avant-garde jazz improvisers. They also have original, evocative and masterful playing techniques, improvising style and are collaborating with other famous jazz masters. Their music has unpredictable, strange, modern and dynamic sound. Electronics, special sound effects and other elements are the basic of all compositions played by this ensemble.

“Chants And Corners” consists of 9 compositions. All of them are based on brave and novatoric musical experiments, strange noises, timbres and sounds, free musical form and high variety of music styles. Improvisations by musicians are very variable and dynamic – very fast and virtuosic solos, melodic and subtle saxophone and cornet episodes, drum rolls, various percussion elements are combined with electronics, computer effects and other modern music elements. The musicians try out many different playing techniques, they also combine various musical styles in one composition. Avant-garde jazz, creative, free jazz, bebop and other jazz styles are gently and subtly combined with Brazilian music elements. Sounds of traditional instruments, Brazilian folk songs melodies, rhytm and other music elements organic and subtle combine with experimental jazz elements. Japan and other Asia countries music elements are also used in compositions of this album. High variety of music styles, masterful and talented jazz masters, creative musical experiments and wonderful combination of acoustic and electronic sounds give this album a novatoric, effective and dynamic sound.

Bobby Previte – “Terminals Quartets” (Cantaloupe, 2017)

“Terminals Quartets’ – it’s the newest album by compositor, jazz improviser Bobby Previte. Album had been released in March by “Cantaloupe Music” and played by NYU “Percussion Ensemble”. This ensemble performs modern music which is based on modern and novatoric percussion. Musicians use many strange and novatoric instruments, try out musical experiments. There also is high variety of timbres, strange noises and sounds of instruments. The music of ensemble has modern music and avant-garde jazz styles. It’s free, approachable, evocative and modern.

“Terminals Quartets” has 5 compositions. Each of them is written for different instruments played by musicians of percussion ensemble. There are “Terminal A” (Alex Appel, Brandon Nestor, Matthew Overbay, Sara Barsky), “Terminal B” (Adam Holmes, Luz Carime Santa Coloma, Indigo Cook, Rob Guilford), “Terminal C” (Luis Jacome, Russell Fisher, Rose Egan, Greg Auffredou), “Terminal D” ( Yael Litwin, Sean Perham, Doug Chew, Sarah Bennett, Bobby Previte & Yael Litwin – drum set solos) and “Terminal E” ( Abby Fisher, Karina Yau, Alex Appel, Marc Akiyama, Jonathan Haas – timpani solo). The music of qall compositions is modern and novatoric. There are high variety of instruments, sounds, music styles and other elements. The music has effective and approachable sound which is based on contrasts and different music elements combined one after another. After drum rolls, strong timpani solos and other active and energetic melodies subtle and silent episodes are included. This music is full of surprises, has variable and polyphonic musical facture and is very dynamic. Musicians also can improvise, try out new playing techniques, novatoric musi cal experiments. The form of these compositions isn’t based on strict form which is used for European music. It’s free, variable and dynamic compositions which are combined of many different and novatoric music elements, sounds, timbres and styles. That’s why this music has effective, modern, approachable and interesting sound.

Han-earl Park, Dominic Lash, Mark Sanders and Caroline Pugh – “Sirene 1009” (2017)

“Sirene 1009” had been released last month by four great jazz musicians. It’s Han-earl Park (guitar), Dominic Lash (double bass), Mark Sanders (drums) and Caroline Pugh (voice). The quartet demonstrates new sound of experimental jazz – it’s novatoric, evocative and original. Their music is very dynamic and contrastic. Many elements of various music styles are combined in their compositions. All four musicians are talented and creative jazz musicians and experimentators. They have original and creative sound, try out different and extended playing techniques and other elements of music languages.

“Sirene 1009” consists of 6 compositions. All of them are based on free collective improvisation. Rhytmic, melodies and other music elements don’t have any strictly based form. Improvisations have original and interesting sound which is based on musical experiments, strange sounds and timbres, short melodies and very dynamic and unpredictable sound. Musicians try out all playing techniques and musical styles. Various elements of rock, free jazz, creative jazz are combined in one composition. Each musician is improvising different and original. Novatoric sound of compositions is based on wonderful Caroline Pugh vocal, dynamic Dominic Lash double bass melodies, Han-earl Park guitar which brings to improvisations rock music elements and high variety of percussion played by Mark Sanders. Musicians virtuosity and talent, very well controlled vocal elements and other instruments melodies brings to this album effective and novatoric sound.

Dan Philips Chicago Edge Ensemble “Decaying Orbit” (2017)

The album “Decaying Orbit” had been released this month and played by Dan Philips “Chicago Edge Ensemble”. “Chicago Edge Ensemble” is an ensemble consisting of famous jazz musicians – it’s Dan Phillips (guitar), Hamid Drake (drums), Mars Williams (saxophones), Jeb Bishop (trombone) and Krzysztof Pabian (double bass). Collective improvisations played by these five musicians have a very dinamical, expressive and approachable sound. Novatoric musical experimentals, sound effects and high variety of jazz styles – that’s the basic elements of this quintet compositions. Their music has many surprises and unpredictable sound and styles variety.

Album contains of 7 compositions. Like in other albums of this ensemble, in this there are high variety of music styles. All the compositions are free, expressive and creative collective improvisations. The musicians try out different playing techniques, music styles, expressions and other elements. Expressive and rigorous solos, approachable sound melodies, novatoric musical experiments, dynamic rythmic and many other elements bring for these compositions creative, rigorous, contrasting and interesting sound. This music is full of surprises – sometimes it’s expressive and dynamic, sometimes – very rigorous, sharp and aggresive. All compositions have a proffesional instrumentations and best quality of sound.