Japanese pianist Satoko Fujii says that she and her trumpeter-husband Natsuki Tamira do not speak much with their French partners in the Kaze quartet – fellow- trumpeter Christian Pruvost and drums Peter Orins. But words are indeed redundant when the music speak in such great volumes.
«Atody Man»is the fifth album of Kaze and is released as part of Fujii’s 60th birthday celebration, in which she releases a new album every month, each in a different setting, throughout 2018. The album was recorded on June 2017 at FireHouse 12, New Haven. As on previous albums of Kaze, all four musicians contributed compositions for «Atody Man». But the minimalist compositional framework serve only as an excuse for extended improvisations, stressing the wise and profound rapport between these strong-minded musicians and Kaze far-reaching sonic vision.
Orins’ «Hypnotique Sympathie» opens the album with a long, modulated calls of the trumpeters – Pruvost is heard on the right channel and Tamura on the left one. These etherea calls set the somber, ritualistic spirit of this piece, and «Atody Man» at all. Fujii intensifies this ritualistic interplay and anchors it within a moving, lyrical theme. His second composition, «Méta-Blizzard», is an engaging, open improvisation, comprised of some eccentric ideas and weird, abstract sounds, patiently shaped into a powerful, stormy interplay.
Fujii’s first composition, «Moving», shifts between contrasting dynamics and textures. It begins with Fujii duetting with Orins in a contemplative mode that deepens the spirit of the former piece. Later it offers a playful and witty interplay, highlighted by the comic dialog of Tamura and Pruvost, and concludes in a serene yet intense coda. Her second composition, «Morning Glow», revolves around a strong melodic theme, first abstracted by Fujji alone, then her and the trumpeters repeats the theme and later by a fantastic, orchestrated drums solo of Orins.
Tamura contributed «Inspiration 2», an extended improvisation that is built around his array of extended techniques and inventive vocabulary. He turns his trumpet into a sound generator that speaks many alien languages and chants countless enigmatic spells. Pruvost title-piece, egg-man in Malagasy, ends this magical journey with a return to the somber spirit of its beginning. It is a quiet and delicate, four-way conversation than keeps suggesting new nuances and colors in Kaze interplay.
Kaze is still one of its kind. A quartet that keeps experimenting, pushing its limits but always manages to produce beautiful, thoughtful music.
Satoko Fujii (p), Natsuki Tamura (tp), Christian Pruvost (tp), Peter Orins (dr)