Aug 2 2018
This music moves like a cloud, adrift and tethered to nothing but its own ambition and desire. It is free and wild and unpredictable. Be that as it may, City of Gardens has a thick presence, a collaborative density where the interactions between members of the quintet behave as binding agents, and so great is their strength that the music possesses a sense of structure and permanence quite the opposite of its ethereal motion. Recorded live at the City of Gardens Concert Hall during the 2017 Silesian Jazz Festival, the RGG Trio, joined by trumpeter Verneri Pohjola and trombonist Samuel Blaser, offer up a stunning example of how the emotional intensity of improvisation can be corralled and focused without losing even a little bit of the volatility that fuels it.
There’s an ebb and flow to the music. The uneasy serenity that settles in becomes increasingly beautiful as it traces the outline of a melody resulting from a shaky agreement between collaborators, and which gains strength the more each musician hints at its existence. Even when that serenity becomes a distant spot in the rear view mirror, its presence still hangs in the air as the ferocity of the moment takes over. And this, too, feeds into the sense of impermanence when that serenity, sure to settle in yet again, makes itself known. And the cycle repeats itself over and over, across the span of five tracks, each at least ten minutes in length, and each of them over far too soon.
This is a magnificent work. And it’s yet one more motivation to begin exploring the Fundacja Słuchaj! Bandcamp page.
Your album personnel: Łukasz Ojdana (piano), Maciej Garbowski (bass), Krzysztof Gradziuk (drums), Verneri Pohjola (trumpet) and Samuel Blaser (trombone).
Released on Fundacja Słuchaj!
Listen to more of the album on the artist’s Bandcamp page.
Music from Katowice, Poland.
Available at: Bandcamp