Krzysztof Komorek, Donos kulturalny:
MAREK POSPIESZALSKI, No Other End Of The World Will There Be (Clean Feed Records)
Jan Granlie, salt-peanuts.eu:
OSGOOD / MOSES / MUÑOZ Spiritual Drum Kingship (GOTTA LET IT OUT)
Dick Hovenga, Written in Music:
BEN VAN GELDER Manifold (DoYouMind?Records)
Viktor Bensusan, jazzdergisi.com:
FUAT YUAC Immigrant (Tuzu Kuru Records)
Nuno Catarino, jazz.pt:
TROLL’S TOY Synesthesia (Vic Nic)
Henning Bolte, freelance:
SANEM KALFA Miraculous Layers – Live at BIMhuis (Bimhuis Records, Reflex Series)
Sebastian Scotney, LondonJazz News:
DAVID HELBOCK Austrian Syndicate (ACT)
Patrik Sandberg, Jazz:
PAT METHENY Dream Box (BMG)
Cim Meyer, Jazz Special:
SIMONE GRAZIANO Frontal Sexuality (Auand)
Lars Mossefinn, Dag og tid:
ENDRE RUSET, STIAN OMENÅS, JON BALKE Noriaki (Nye nor)
Axel Stinshoff, Jazz thing:
MESHELL NDEGEOCELLO The Omnichord Real Book (Blue Note)
Luca Vitali, Giornale della Musica:
MARK RIBOT – CERAMIC DOG Connection (Knockwurst Records)
Yves Tassin, JazzMania:
LA JUNGLE Blurry Landscapes (Black Basset Records)
Jos Demol, jazzhalo.be:
NICLAS KNUDSEN TRIO Migrating Songs (NK Music)
Christof Thurnherr, Jazz’n’More:
MARK RIBOT – CERAMIC DOG Connection (Knockwurst Records)
Kaspars Zavileiskis, jazzin.lv:
THE ADAM LARSON TRIO With Love, From New York (Outside In Music)
Jacek Brun, www.jazz-fun.de:
EFRAT ALONY Händel Fast Forward (Dot Time Records)
Madli-Liis Parts, Muusika:
BRIAN BLADE & THE FELLOWSHIP BAND Kings Highway (Stone Hill Records)
Mike Flynn, Jazzwise:
MATTHEW HALSALL An Ever Changing View (Gondwana)
Why did I choose –
The concert recorded on this album in March 2022 was the kick off of a – still continuing – series of BIMhuis- commissions called REFLEX. The title collates musical reflection and action-intervention towards grains of social and individual realities. The challenge is to find intervening forms of music making that not only reflect realities but also open up undiscovered, unknown sides and views of it. Music as an art form does not talk about things or create symbolic imagery. It touches our souls, the flow and rapids of our moods, our feelings and own inner time by organised sounds, its energies and dynamics.
All pieces on this album come from a wondrous place and indeed connect among each other in miraculous modes. Fascinatingly Kalfa crosses the realms between whispers, cries and deep canto (especially in the beauty of her dreamlike phrasing of Sait Maden’s poem Boslukta that gets a natural place here, and in her deeply touching a capella vocal duo with Fuensanta in “Wound”).
Free improvisation, radical vocals, driving rhythmic vibrance and poignancy and balladeering emerge from a strong, elegant and passionate undercurrent unified in a remarkable way. That constitutes something almost non-graspable and just due to it a new enchanting form with its own attracting ether and its challenging secrets. Kalfa not only has an amazingly flexible expressive voice and truthful way of making use of it. Her spontaneous lively dramaturgy and her performance intensity lift it all to a higher airy level while it actualises effortlessly and organically with great surrender.
The group comprises four female musicians of divers origin (Turkey, Poland, Korea, Mexico), key members (and bandleaders in their own right) of the new vibrant Amsterdam/Rotterdam scene plus two female artists from Istanbul: Sanem Kalfa (comp, vocals, vcl, electronics), Marta Warelis (p, vocals), Fuensanta Mendez (b, vocals), Sun-Mi Hong (dr, vocals), Kamucan Yalçin (cl, vocals), Ilgen Arzik (decor, costumes).
As an incidental feature of this album you can also immerse into integral registration of the concert on BIMhuis TV. It’s a worthwhile extra rich pleasure. You can take the more condensed album as a stepping stone for that.
There is a clue in the title: Austrian pianist David Helbock reveres Joe Zawinul. Here Helbock plays ONLY rhodes, synthesizers & effects, finding joyous sounds as if he has time-travelled back to the 1970s and 1980’s when it was all new and still being discovered..while leaving ALL the piano duties to another musician he has huge respect for, his teacher and mentor, American pianist Peter Madsen, a real musician’s musician. This album, which has some star guests such as Lakecia Benjamin, Maria João, Fred Wesley and Dhafer Youssef is the most joyous and communicative album that Helbock has made, the most personal (as he says, “this is close to my heart”). And I would say his best. Some reviewers don’t listen to albums expecting fun, so for them all I can realistically do is misquote Bobby McFerrin: «Don’t worry, be miserable.»
The duo widens their possibilities and nothing seems to stop them. Simply grandiose ! (Claudy Jalet)
Migrating Songs by Niclas Knudsen we recommend to guitar lovers of the finest class playing as in the primal spirit of Philip Catherine and Jim Hall. (Bernard Lefèvre)
Adam Larson is a bright representative of the American jazz generation in their thirties, one of the creators of the modern transoceanic jazz sound. The new album, which finishes a trilogy dedicated to the most important cities in Adam Larson’s life (Chicago, Kansas City, New York), proves that he is both a passionate tenor saxophonist and composer, and a delicate innovator who is not afraid to cruise into new jazz waters. The record dedicated to New York was played together with two representatives of the jazz scene of the Big Apple – Matt Clohesy, a creative bass player with a great vibe, and Obed Calvaire, a drummer with a right feeling for subtle jazz playing. Doing without the presence of a harmonic instrument, all three feel free to swing and groove, and the album never feels like something is missing. A brilliant modern jazz LP in 2023.
Efrat Alony has succeeded in capturing this universal musical imprint and in making something far more profound out of the fusion of different traditions than a superficial weaving of classical motifs into jazz structures. Even the title of the album suggests not only a cross-border connection between musical spaces, but also their continuity. Another great work from this exceptional artist.
This is, in many ways, a stellar example of how you don’t need a big, commercial name to be one of the world’s best guitarists (Tisziji Muñoz). And with Kresten Osgood and Bob Moses as «armors», they have made a «guitar album» that should make a large number of guitarists leave their guitar and let the professionals do the job. And here we meet one of the best and most unknown in superb interaction and «battle» with two of the world’s most outstanding drummers.
Pat Methenys latest record Dream Box features pianist Chris Fishman and drummer Joe Dyson and pushes the bandleaders boundaries of musical exploration once again. The goal for the soon 69-year-old guitarist has in recent years been to work with musicians from a younger generation with whom he nevertheless feels a kind of kinship — similar to the role Metheny himself had when Gary Burton brought him into his band and let him develop there. The material is based on forgoten recordings, a discovery during a deep dive into his hardrive on his laptop. Once again, the guitar legend demonstrates his sophisticated and unfailing ability to make every note ring with great meaning.
Fuat Tuaç gives a Bee Gees atmosphere to jazz vocal, soft yet strong. As jazz has its roots in the music of the displaced, this album reflects the zeitgeist where most of us physically, mentally or emotionally migrate with or without our own will…
Troll’s Toy is a power trio formed by Jorge Loura (baritone guitar), Gabriel Neves (tenor saxophone) and João Martins (drums). The trio had so far released two albums, «18:05» (2019) and «Eksterordinare» (2021, double vinyl). Now, the trio has teamed up with pianist João Salcedo for a studio session. If in the previous discs it was more concise and explosive, now it is no longer in a hurry, it is more exploratory. Always well structured, the music evolves and transforms over the course of a single 40-minute track. This encounter between Troll’s Toy and João Salcedo is a beautiful surprise, an exploratory journey that challenges the listener. The music was released in an original format (which is not even foreseen on Discogs): the album was released as a bottle of craft beer (including a download code), in a limited edition – available via Bandcamp.
Dutch Saxophonist/composer Ben van Gelder is a musical challenger. Surrounded by like-minded musicians, he constantly seeks musical adventure. He asked British keyboardist Kit Downes to be pivotal in a grand new piece of music in which the organ is the center. Challenge and organ, then the genius Downes is your man. In addition to Downes, van Gelder has once again brought together a fine company of musicians. With Fuensanta on vocals, Joris Roelofs on bass clarinet, Hristo Goleminov on tenor sax, Antoine Pierre on drums and Jean-Paul Estiévenart on trumpet and van Gelder himself on alto sax, he has found just the right international group of musicians for this piece of music. A piece of music that leans heavily on classical from its freedom in jazz and slides into modern classical sounding as versatile as it is adventurous. Manifold is a powerful and rich musical statement that sounds as challenging, overwhelming and international. Constantly looking beyond national borders, van Gelder has developed into an international musician who prefers freedom and challenge and, as a result, can and may be counted internationally among the most important jazz musicians of his generation. Manifold proves this BIG TIME!
Marek Pospieszalski’s album «Polish Composers Of The 20th Century» was unanimously hailed as the jazz album of the 2022 in Poland. And this project lived to see its continuation with programme dedicated this time to Polish female composers. There is no fooling oneself that this is easy music. But the genre weight of the album corresponds one hundred per cent to its extraordinary artistic value. Confirming the reputation of the leader, the musicians involved and the publisher.
Keybordist Simone Graziano, featuring Dan Kinzelman (ts), Reinier Baas (g),Gabriele Evangelista (b) and Stefano Tamborrino (d, voc), has made a release that makes me think of Steve Reich, Terry Riley and the other minimalists.
The voices weave between each other and make sense. Intense and colorful with insistent rhythms and stubborn riffs in the fast-paced pieces. Typical of the Florentine artist, there are often scene changes where rhythms, themes and dynamics suddenly change.
You don’t have to «understand» what they’re playing. You can just let yourself slip with the album’s meditative, kaleidoscopic collection of voices.