The Polish RGG Trio – pianist Łukasz Ojdana (who replaced the original R pianist, Przemysław Raminiak, about a decade ago), double bass player Maciej Garbowski and drummer Krzysztof Gradziuk – is one of the most prolific bands in the Polish jazz scene. The trio was founded twenty years ago and «Mysterious Monuments On The Moon» is its 12th album, including albums that documented its collaborations with innovative European improvisers like British sax heroes Evan Parker and Trevor Watts, Swiss trombonist Samuel Blaser and Finnish trumpeter Verneri Pohjola.
«Mysterious Monuments On The Moon» is different from previous albums of the trio, which relied primarily on well-crafted compositions. Now, after playing together for so many years, inspiring and driving each other into action, and out of a wish to celebrate its twentieth anniversary in a special way, and after a series of improvised concerts, the RGG Trio wanted to use the studio time for collective, adventurous exploration and joyful spontaneous creation. «Unrestricted FREEDOM», as the trio calls it.
The new approach stresses each sound, the way it was produced and its timbral qualities, and patiently and organically the RGG Trio weaves the disparate sounds into subtle themes and structures. The introspective, lyrical atmosphere may draw comparisons to the ECM aesthetics (and Garbowski has played Tomasz Stańko’s New Balladyna Quartet and leads the Lutoslawski Collective dedicated to the music of Polish modern composer Witold Lutoslawski, featured on a few albums of ECM New Series). The music features eight «Monument» pieces, most of them are loose sonic meditations and passing thoughts, and seven pieces that distill brief, dissonant sonic events or strong melodic veins out of sound-oriented improvisations. The most beautiful ones are the moving «Moonray» and «Son of Prince». Throughout all these delicate. chamber pieces, RGG Trio escapes familiar classifications, common narratives, or obvious structures, and solidifies its strong, independent identity as a trio with its own sound, compositional strategies and dynamics.
Łukasz Ojdana (p), Maciej Garbowski (b), Krzysztof Gradziuk (dr)