Die hörende und darüber schreibende Zunft hat ihre Auswahl für den Februar getroffen. Mit dabei sind u.a. Alexander Hawkins, Eric Dolphy, Randi Pontoppidan, Seed Ensemble, Francesco Diodati, Veronika Harcsa and Balint Gyemant Quartett …
SEED ENSEMBLE Driftglass (Jazz re:freshed)
RANDI PONTOPPIDAN Rooms (Chant Records)
The Danish singer, Randi Pontoppidan, has made 13 solo wordless songs, along with exquisite use of electronics, and I am seated as a feathered over Pontoppidan’s amazing voice, which creeps into my soul and stays there throughout the whole record. A great record in the same landscape where we find Sidsel Endresen and Phil Minton.
VERONIKA HARCSA AND BÁLINT GYÉMÁNT QUARTET Shapeshifter (Traumton)
ERIC DOLPHY Musical Prophet – The Expanded 1963 New York Studio Sessions (Resonance Records)
This is one of the few albums which you should buy if you cannot afford to listen to it. You can compare neither apples with oranges nor Coltrane with Dolphy. This album set is from the incomparable jazz era of 1960’s, and Dolphy was one of the many prophets whose prophecies we still hearken…
ALEXANDER HAWKINS Iron Into The Wind – Piano Solo (Intakt Records)
You might say that pianist/organist Alexander Hawkins (1981) is a phenomenon on the present European jazz scene what he indeed is. The last two years he was omnipresent playing not for nothing on a breathtakingly wide geographical radius as well as in an astonishing variety of musical partnerships and style domains. This second solo album of him (with excellent liner notes by Richard Williams) is an astonishing discursive affair. Hawkins elaborates a series of clear musical structures and constellations (iron) in a reflective as well as highly energetic way, with great dynamics and various moods (in the wind). In Hawkin’s case the narrative is the music itself, its (process of) overwriting, expansion, collisions, coexistences and metamorphosis. The special synergy of abstractness and expressiveness, dynamics and moods in Hawkins’ music here makes it a listening experience of a kind. It’s an even strange as captivating sound walk that keeps the listener curious on what’s comes behind the next corner.
RYMDEN Reflections and Odysseys (Jazzland)
KJETIL JERVE | TIM THORNTON | ANDERS THORÉN Circumstances (AMP Music and Records)
An international trio (Norway | UK | Sweden) produce soothing, subtle and understated music in the vein of Bill Evans and Keith Jarrett.
MATS EILERTSEN/HARMEN FRAANJE/THOMAS STRØNEN And Then Comes The Night (ECM)
BRANFORD MARSALIS QUARTET The Secret Between The Shadow And The Soul (Okeh)
FRANCESCO DIODATI – YELLOW SQUEEDS Never the same (Auand Records)
JOHN BUTCHER/JOE MCPHEE At The Hill of James Magee (Trost Records)
PIOTR SCHMIDT QUARTET FEAT. WOJCIECH NIEDZIELA Tribute To Tomasz Stańko (SJ Records)
Tomasz Stańko, who departed last year at age 76, was a towering presence on the Polish jazz scene and a huge inspiration to the next generation of players. Piotr Schmidt, also a trumpet player, recorded this tribute album as a form of acknowledgemt and farewell to the old master. His quartet includes Wojciech Niedziela on piano and a rhythm section that had performed with Stanko over the previous year as part of his Polish quartet (Maciej Garbowski – b, Krzysztof Gradziuk – dr). The album features original compositions with one exception – Krzysztof Komeda’s lullaby “Rosemary’s Baby”. The music is heart-wrenching, melancholic, full of sorrow and… beauty.