World of Jazz 427

  1. Dave Stryker “Tough” from Baker’s Circle (Strikezone Records) 00:00
  2. Tania Giannouli Trio “Labyrinth” from In Fading Light (Rattle Records) 08:49
  3. Tom Swafford & Zachary Swanson “Flint Adze” from Scythe Paths Through The Nettles (Self Released) 15:08
  4. Joe Lovano Trio Tapestry “Chapel Song” from Garden of Expression (ECM Records) 21:32
  5. Aki Takase, Christian Weber, Michael Griener “The Pillow Book” from Auge (Intakt Records) 27:48
  6. More Soma “God A” from Hondendodendans (Circum-Disc) 34:46
  7. Dave Stryker “Baker’s Circle” from Baker’s Circle (Strikezone Records) 44:21
  8. Tania Giannouli Trio “When Then” from In Fading Light (Rattle Records) 48:32
  9. Joe Lovano Trio Tapestry “Garden of Expression” from Garden of Expression (ECM Records) 52:40
  10. Tom Swafford & Zachary Swanson “Shoulder Yoke” from Scythe Paths Through The Nettles (Self Released) 1:00:43
  11. Aki Takase, Christian Weber, Michael Griener “Face of the Bass” from Auge (Intakt Records) 1:05:42
  12. _UnK “Andrinople” from NoW_ (Circum-Disc) 1:12:06
  13. Dave Stryker “Trouble (No.2)” from Baker’s Circle (Strikezone Records) 1:22:45
  14. Tania Giannouli Trio “Hinemoa’s Lament” from In Fading Light (Rattle Records) 1:29:15
  15. Tom Swafford & Zachary Swanson “Dark Carlyle” from Scythe Paths Through The Nettles (Self Released) 1:38:12
  16. Joe Lovano Trio Tapestry “Zen Like” from Garden of Expression (ECM Records) 1:42:57
  17. Aki Takase, Christian Weber, Michael Griener “Who’s Going To Bell The Cat?/Are Eyes Open?” from Auge (Intakt Records) 1:54:03

BACKGROUND NOTES

A mixed bag of great new sounds. After last year’s successful big band outing, Blue Soul, guitarist Dave Stryker is back with his hard-driving, deep grooving B3 organ group on his new recording—Baker’s Circle. The Tania Giannouli Trio’s unique sounds have been described as Manfred Eicher’s dream of a Mediterranean holiday. Tom Swafford and Zachary Swanson deliver a fascinating exploratory free improvisation project. The debut album of Joe Lovano’s Trio Tapestry was one of 2019’s most talked-about releases. This musical concept is taken to the next level on its amazing second album, Garden of Expression. Japanese pianist/composer Aki Takase fronts this newly formed trio project, Auge, featuring Swiss bassist Christian Weber and German drummer Michael Griener, The ground breaking French label Circum-Disc delivers two great new albums of genre bending jazz.

Dave Stryker

After last year’s successful big band outing, Blue Soul, guitarist Dave Stryker is back with his hard-driving, deep grooving B3 organ group on his new recording—Baker’s Circle. With the addition of cutting-edge tenor player Walter Smith III, Baker’s Circle features Stryker’s originals as well as a couple of classics and a tip of the hat to his former boss Stanley Turrentine. Along with Smith III, this fresh recording features Dave’s working band of Jared Gold on organ and McClenty Hunter on drums and adds Cuban percussionist Mayra Casales to three tracks as well.

Baker’s Circle starts with three Stryker originals. The hard-hitting “Tough” leads off with exciting solos by the whole band. Casales’ congas join in on the latin groove of “El Camino” followed by the bluesy 7/4 of “Dreamsong.” Cole Porter’s “Everything I Love” is a medium swinger after which Gold’s burning “Rush Hour” shows why Walter Smith III is considered one of the best of his generation. And Dave adds his Eight Track fingerprint to Leon Russell’s “Superstar” and Marvin Gaye’s “Inner City Blues.”

Says Stryker: “Composer and educator David Baker was in my corner from the time I met him at a jazz camp when I was 17 till he hired me to take over as guitar professor at Indiana University a few years ago. I used to see him standing outside the Music School on a circular drive waiting for his wife Lida to pick him up. I named the song ‘Baker’s Circle, in his memory.”

Baker’s Circle closes with “Trouble (No. 2),” a grooving shuffle originally recorded by Stryker’s former boss, the great Stanley Turrentine. This caps a diverse program that showcases Stryker at his best—modern playing with the groove and soul that comes from years of experience.

A lively and enjoyable session of hard bop and funky jazz grooves with some assured playing.

Label: Strikezone Records 8821 – March 5th 2021

Dave Stryker – guitar
Walter Smith III – tenor sax
Jared Gold – organ
McClenty Hunter – drums
Mayra Casales – percussion (#2, 7, 8)

Tania Giannouli

Tania Giannouli (piano)
Andreas Polyzogopoulos (trumpet)
Kyriakos Tapakis (oud)
Produced by Tania Giannouli and Savvas Lazaridis
Recorded by Nikos Kollias (Antart Studio)
and Vangelis Katsoulis (Spectrum Recording Studio)

Tania Giannouli Trio first performed together at the legendary Jazzfest Berlin in 2018. The Downbeat review of the concert described their music as compelling melodies with rolling momentum … like Manfred Eicher’s dream of a Mediterranean holiday”.
German magazine Jazzthetik cited the concert among the best of 2018, while All About Jazz placed the trio’s concerts at Wonderfeel Festival and Zomer Fits Jazz Tour among the highlights of 2019. The trio have concerts booked at Jazzahead Festival, Sendesaal, and the prestigious new music festival November Music in 2021.

Tom Swafford and Zachary Swanson

A self-released debut album released on February 5th, 2021 on digital and streaming platforms.

Recorded in a warehouse in Brooklyn, NY, this album is entirely improvised. Free flowing themes unfold to reveal spontaneous compositions that dip in and out of tonality with shifting foreground and backgrounds. Rubato passages give way to tempo, as density and timbre highlight the range and sonic capabilities of the violin and double bass. Their language pulls from a range of influences with tinges of jazz, classical, folk, and rock melding into one voice from two sympathetic improvisers. The pieces were given titles post recording and largely reference tools and scenery you may find in an old barn. Originally coming together in an old-time string band, Swafford and Swanson quickly enjoyed a musical camaraderie and shared interest in music both old and new. This led to the formation of their duo as an exploratory free improvisation project. They have had the opportunity to tour together regionally on the east coast and continue to perform locally for adventurous listeners in New York City

Joe Lovano Trio Tapestry

The debut album of Joe Lovano’s Trio Tapestry was one of 2019’s most talked-about releases. This musical concept is taken to the next level on its second album, Garden of Expression, a recording distinguished by its intense focus.

Lovano, a saxophonist whose reach extends across the history of modern jazz and beyond, plays with exceptional sensitivity in Trio Tapestry. The music he writes for this group-tenderly melodic or declamatory, harmonically open, rhythmically free, and spiritually involving-encourages subtle and differentiated responses from his creative partners, creating interactions in which Lovano describes as “magical.” Carmen Castaldi’s space-conscious approach to drumming further refines an improvisational understanding that he and Lovano have shared since the early 1970s. The trio is also an inspired context for Marilyn Crispell’s solos, counter melodies, and improvisational embellishments. Her feeling for sound-color helps the chamber music character of the group bloom.

A steady artistic growth can be charted between the first and second Trio Tapestry albums. For Lovano, “Seeds of Change” was a key piece in terms of approach on the trio’s debut album. The open form itself is at once a blues, a ballad, and a chamber music composition. With a feel and a flow that was special, leading directly to the title piece of Garden of Expression, the seeds having taken root. “Between the two albums we have an amazing repertoire now,” says Lovano.

This new album also benefits from its recording at Lugano Switzerland’s Auditorio Stelio Molo SRI studio with highly responsive acoustics, with the details of the music optimally realized in Manfred Eichner’sproduction. The trio recorded in the studio on their second European tour in November 2019 after they’d performed a concert in the studio the evening before. “Having given a full performance there, we were very comfortable with the room,” noted Lovano. “The tone there, and the sound and the feeling in that space, built to be a recital room, is amazing. We played forte and really felt it. We played at pianissimovolume, and you heard the music vibrating in the room. And that created a real spiritual delivery on each composition, as we allowed the music to unfold.”

Aki Takase, Christian Weber, Michael Griener

Recorded February 18, 19, 2019, Traumton Studios, Berlin, Germany
Aki Takase: piano
Christian Weber: double bass
Michael Griener: drums

More Soma

avant-garde jazz | free improvisation

Mathieu Millet : double-bass | Frédéric L’Homme : drums | JB Rubin : alto & barytone saxophones

Circum-Disc First release

_UnK

JB RUBIN : ALTO & BARYTONE SAXOPHONES
CHRISTOPHE MAERTEN : GUITAR
CHARLES DUYTSCHAEVER : DRUMS
MATHIEU MILLET : DOUBLE BASS & COMPOSITIONS

We don’t really know how to pronounce _UNK or which letter is missing… ! _UNK invites, leaves open and then tries to create surprise, starting with its name proposed as an enigma but also through the music that the quartet gives to hear.

Formed in 2015, _UNK offers for its first CD a repertoire made up solely of original compositions but also an unpredictable arrangement of a Choral by Olivier Messiaen, which is definitely in line with _UNK’s desire to surprise.

_UNK clears, mixes and confronts genres offering a contemporary, energetic, electric, urban jazz tinged with rock. A jazz that could be described as progressive, sometimes experimental, but also very written, melting groove, improvisations and atmospheric ballads with melodies that are sometimes unusual, eccentric, lyrical and sensitive.

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