The Dutch Rembrandt Trio – pianist Rembrandt Frerichs, double bass player Tony Overwater and drummer-percussionist Vinsent Planjer, like many other musicians, found itself grounded when the world came to a standstill in 2020. After seven albums and fifteen years of touring the world together, the trio was now forced to stay put, stop performing, traveling and collaborating. This time of reflection led the trio to record an album of songs that brought into play their collective memories; memories that incorporated motifs, themes and experiences from distinct musical cultures into their work and collaborations with Persian grandmasters Hossein Alizadeh and Kayhan Kalhor. A shared imagination in which they transcend boundaries – eras and places – and still travel the world.
The trio secluded itself in February 2021 in Orgelpark, a former church in Amsterdam, filled with antique organs with beautiful acoustics and unique reverberations, and recorded «A Wind Invisible Sweeps us Through the World», titled after from a poem by the 13th-century Persian poet Rumi. The 15 pieces rely on strong melodies that guide the conversational dynamics of the trio, and all draw on the extensive communal experience of the trio. These performance-tested pieces are based on universal themes from different times and cultures; a Bach motif, a Chinese folk song, or a whiff of Armenian folklore.
The Rembrandt Trio succeeded to create a set of timeless pieces that adapt the open, improvising dynamics of a jazz trio in which all its musicians are well-versed in classical and contemporary music, and enjoy experimenting with the sounds and instruments of early music and the Middle East. The title piece and «Fight Song» sound as if inspired by the instant folk melodies of G.I.Gurdjieff. Other pieces have more direct references like the Bach-tinged «Bleib Bei Uns, Johann Sebastian» that invites the old master to improvise with the trio. «Leaves of Green» highlight the affinity of the trio to Middle-Eastern scales. «The Moon Shines Bright When It Doesn’t Avoid The Night», titled after another poem by Rumi, and the last piece «Grace» are touching gentle jazz ballads that cement the almost telepathic interplay of the trio.
Rembrandt Frerichs (p, org), Tony Overwater (b, violone), Vinsent Planjer (dr, perc)