Feb 13 2020
Best of 2019 #09: Goran Kajfes Tropiques – “Into the Wild”
Goran Kajfeš doesn’t fuse together different music forms so much as view them all as interconnected motions in one, long intricate dance. The trumpeter waltzes, foxtrots and tangos with the folk musics of Turkey, Sweden, the Balakans, Africa, and America with no change in dance partner, and with a fluidity that sees old-school psychedelic jazz-rock, new-school avant garde, and a timeless ballad as different facets of the same, synchronized motion. The modern jazz and improvised music scene has revealed itself to be as diverse as any art form on the planet; Goran Kajfeš embraces and embodies that truth.
But his world-hopping expressionism is just part of this music’s charismatic appeal. It’s as much to do with the trumpeter’s talent for bringing the same energy and introspection to his sound, regardless of whether he’s instituting a deep groove or an ambient drone. There’s a vitality to it at all times like the beating of a heart at first love, and a centered calm like a heart that is one with its surroundings, its beat in sync with the pulse of the world. Kajfeš’ music is varied, nuanced, strange and obscure, and the culmination of the influences and approach results in music with an addictive personality and one that is supremely fun. The music of Goran Kajfeš is essential, and some of the best stuff the new century of jazz has to offer.
Your album personnel: Goran Kajfeš (trumpet, Moog synthesizer, Make Noise 0-coast), Alexander Zethson (piano, Crumar Organ, Korg MS-20), Johan Berthling (acoustic bass), Johan Homegard (drums, percussion) and Christer Bothén (bass clarinet).
Released on Headspin Recordings.
Music from Stockholm, Sweden.
I wrote about the album for The Bandcamp Daily.
Feb 14 2020
Best of 2019 #08: Rebecca Trescher – “Where We Go”
Not all recordings are finished products. Some albums intentionally capture the beginning stages of a concept, where the musicians are fleshing out new compositions in the studio. Some albums capture a transition phase, where recent works are given new perspectives in a live setting, or while on tour. Other albums reflect other stages of creative development, either encapsulating old ideas in new ways or providing glimpses of a view from the next plateau. The 2019 release from Rebecca Trescher is a landing spot. Following thirteen performances over two years during her concert series at Tafelhalle Nuremburg, the clarinetist went into the studio and captured every bit of that creative trajectory into an expansive statement of stunning beauty. The richness of the music reflects not just that time of regimented experimentation, but also of the diverse collaborators of musicians, instruments, dancers, writers, and filmmakers who contributed to that concert series. This large ensemble work possesses a huge sound, as if flirting with the epic, but adheres to a chamber music sensibility, where the subtlest nuance can resonate like a thunder storm. Trescher’s 2012 debut Sud was one of the best things to come out that year; that it was just the starting point makes the success of Where We Go that much more dramatic.
Your album personnel: Rebecca Trescher (bass clarinet, clarinet), Sebastian Strempel (trumpet, cornet), Joachim Lenhardt (tenor & soprano saxophones, clarinet, flute), Markus Harm (alto sax, clarinet, flute), Anton Mangold (concert harp, flute, sax), Juri Kannheiser (vocals), Andreas Feith (piano), Tim Collins (vibraphone), Peter Christof (bass) and Silvio Morger (drums).
Released on Enja Records.
Music from Nuremberg, Germany.
Listen | Read more | Available at: Amazon
By davesumner • Recap: Best of 2019 • 0 • Tags: Best Jazz of 2019, Enja Records, Nuremberg (Germany), Rebecca Trescher, Tim Collins