domingo, 22 de noviembre de 2015

Daniel Cano Quintet - Don't Touch The Blue (2015)

"Daniel Cano ofrece un trabajo rotundo en el que densidad de ideas y claridad en la exposición hacen posible jazz de muchos quilates.

En algún punto fértil entre los años 50 del hard bop y la sofisticación fluida de mediados de los 60 en Blue Note, entre Miles Davis y Tom Harrell habría que situar estilisticamente, y en el presente, esta música. El arrebatador inicio de tiempos rápidos de bop y cruce de solos de Sin Trom dan paso a Changes, estupenda y moderna pieza de construcción aditiva y creciente en intensidad. El fraseo alargado y en unísonos de saxo y trompeta en el inicio de Plutón,  la pegada groove de Jesús Pazos con la guitarra funky de Wilfred Wilde y el volumen fibroso del bajo de Paco Charlin en ¿Tu siempre tienes que ser el mismo? y también en Plutón, mientras los metales dibujan líneas en suspensión, el soberbio solo de trompeta en el blues que titula el disco, la versión elusiva y hermosa de Chelsea Bridge que endereza Cortejosa con su solo y continua Cano con su entrada, un Monk distraído en la contagiosa y compleja a la vez Buenordías, sonidos envolventes en y funky con especias melódicas mexicanas que sugieren, en cuarteto sin guitarra, el emparejamiento de Dave Douglas y John Zorn en Masada... el color del empaste conseguido, los tonos azulados (!que no los toquen!) contorneándose a  ritmo de funky… uno tras otro detalles de sobrado buen gusto y talento.

Jazz gozoso y sin aditivos extras, un sugestivo y sólido viaje por la memoria viva de la mejor Blue Note." JESÚS GONZALO. Read More...


Daniel Cano: Trompeta y fliscornio
Pedro Cortejosa: Saxos, tenor y soprano
Paco Charlín: Contrabajo
Wilfried Wilde: Guitarra
Jesús Pazos: Batería


Maciej Grywacz - Connected (2015)

The music is a melodic contemporary Jazz, which sounds fresh and interesting from the very first notes and manages to keep the listener in suspense till the very last notes. The guitar / saxophone dual front line works very well, as both players move elegantly between the unisono parts to individual solos and back to the melody. Grzywacz does a wonderful job playing soft but complex guitar chords behind the saxophone solos and of course plays many well constructed solos. Dinesen is obviously the most expressive musician in this quartet, playing long stretches of improvisation, without loosing the melody line even for a moment. The rhythm section plays in typical Scandinavian pattern, with the bass driving the music forward with a steady pulse and the drums playing around the beat, rather that keeping time. 

In spite of the fact that the album features three Scandinavian musicians, it does not suffer from the typical Scandinavian lethargy that puts many music fans to sleep very effectively. Most of the music is lively and up tempo, with virtuosic solos ripping the air. Even the slower numbers have a lot of energy and vigor and keep the listener in check. There is quite a lot of freedom in the way the quartet works together, giving each other space and respect. This album is one of many projects with Polish and Scandinavian musicians collaborating, like they did in the 1960s and 1970s, which is one of the many interesting aspects of the new Polish Jazz scene. 

Personally I find the work of Dinesen especially rewording on this album, which is hardly surprising considering his huge success he enjoys back hope and internationally. Also this is surely the most complex and ambitious album Grzywacz recorded to date, which of course is commendable. Seeing him developing over time is truly rewarding. This is definitely a piece of music worth checking out as it holds many truly wonderful moments.

01. Connected 7:48
02. The Third Wish 7:25
03. Konwikt 4:55
04. Dreamer’s Dream 4:45
05. Little Ikon 6:10
06. Piazza 5:43
07. Trondheim - Sopot – Copenhagen 6:06
08. Four Islands 3:35

All music by Maciej Grzywacz

Maciej Grzywacz: guitar
Jakob Dinesen: sax
Daniel Franck: bass
Hakon Mjaset Johansen: drums


Scott Flanigan - Point of Departure (2015)

In an era where it's relatively easy to self-produce an album, Northern Irish pianist Scott Flanigan has taken his time with his debut effort. Now in his early thirties, Flanigan has been a mainstay of the small but flourishing jazz scene in Belfast and beyond for over a decade, collaborating with Linley Hamilton, David Lyttle and Mark McKnight, not to mention the likes of Van Morrison and Jean Toussaint. It's been a patient apprenticeship that has paid dividends, for Flanigan's first outing as leader reflects, above all, his musical maturity. Elegant and technically assured, Flanigan's love of melody shines through on a polished set divided equally between striking original compositions and familiar jazz standards. 

Both classically and jazz trained, Flanigan's hybridity draws from Dimitri Shostakovich and, more overtly, Brad Mehldau's rhythmic and melodic bag. These dual influences are suggested on the opener "The Masterplan," with bassist Neil O'Loghlen and drummer Stephen Davis buoying Flanigan's fluid soloing. This is Flanigan's working trio and it shows in the tight yet flexible interplay. Flanigan and Davis have played every weekend for several years at Bert's Jazz Bar in Belfast—the only nightly jazz venue in Ireland—and their chemistry is keenly felt throughout. Best known as one third of improvising trio Bourne Davis Kane, Davis plays in a more relaxed and straight-ahead vein here, sympathetic to Flanigan's generally light touch, and—notably on the lively "Elevate"—to the pianist's changes of gear. 

The pianist is at his most persuasive on "Stars Fell on Alabama," the much-covered Frank Perkins/Mitchell Parish standard from 1934; O'Loghlen maintains a leisurely groove beneath Flanigan's animated yet essentially lyrical course, while Davis switches from sticks to brushes when the bassist steps up with a delightfully earthy, sonorous solo. A sensitive balladeer, Flanigan's economy illuminates the beauty of Dublin singer-songwriter Edel Meade's aching ballad "Love Lost." Similarly, brushes and spacious bass lines underpin Glen Miller's "Midnight Serenade," though it's when Flanigan deviates from the familiar melody in an unaccompanied outro that he really begins to command attention. 

This is especially true of the solo piano rendition of the Frederick Loewe/Alan Jay Lerner classic "I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face"; liberated from his rhythm section, Flanigan's two-handed dynamics are employed to greater effect here than at any other time on the album. Perhaps Flanigan shows just a little too much respect towards the standards for at times the interpretations lack a little emotional tension. More satisfying in general are the original compositions, which is arguably where Flanigan's real strength lies. Tunes like the elegant yet fiery "Elevate," the boppish throwback "Blues for You" and the epic, melodically striking title track-with Davis stoking Flanigan's engine—all bristle with energy and collective conviction. More of such fare wouldn't have gone amiss. 

On balance, however, this is an impressive first outing from a young pianist of undoubted talent just beginning to establish himself as a leader in his own right. Where the next point of note will be on Flanigan's journey remains to be seen, but there's enough here to suggest that if he gets the bit between the teeth then it will be worth waiting for.

01. The Masterplan
02. Stars Fell on Alabama
03. Love Lost
04. Elevate
05. I’ve Grown Accustomed to Her Face
06. Point of Departure
07. Moonlight Serenade
08. Blues for Later

Scott Flanigan: piano
Neil O’Loghlen: bass
Stephen Davis: drums