dimanche 15 janvier 2012

Theo Bleckmann + John Hollenbeck : "Static Still"


The human voice is presumably the most immediate and touching instrument in music. Even more so if it is masterfully flowing between pure emotions and subtle abstractions as it is the case of Theo Bleckmann. The highly distinguished vocalist from Dortmund, who has been based in New York for many years, doesn’t need lyrics to communicate impressive sentiments. In contrast to some of his colleagues in the crossover field of jazz, improvisation and contemporary music, Bleckmann doesn’t identify himself as an artificial vocal acrobat, although he would undoubtedly be capable of doing so technically. Eccentric vocal caprioles have always been used sparingly with Bleckmann; where others get lost in excessive deconstructions, he always keeps the song in mind".

Norbert Krampf

"Defying categorization has become as predictable as any of the old categories ever were. It's simply really: just reference music without committing to any of it. So how beautiful it is to hear two players who explode all boundaries with their embrace-who commit to all, and all at once...a rich and strange world of noise, motion and melody, all of it infused with wit and unerring musicality. The myriad strains are all there, from country to jungle to operatic, but they're drawn out with a tender glance, not a wink."

Mark Fefer (Seattle Weekly)


mercredi 4 janvier 2012

Reuben Radding trio : "Intersections"

(Pine Ear Music, 2005)

Themes are often somber and long-limbed, with large interval leaps that inspire the trio to stretch phrasing and loosen tempo to the point of open-ended entanglements that spontaneously reshape the music from the inside. Matt Moran’s vibes brighten the ensemble palette, whether in rattling, resonating solos, bowed to create hazy, shimmering harmonics, or sparsely yet percussively comping underneath Oscar Noriega’s deft, rhapsodic, slightly tart clarinet. The key to Radding’s compositional approach lies in the program’s final piece—an arrangement of the sixth movement of Messiaen’s Quatuor pour la fin du Temps, where the extended melody is given a light swing feel and used as a “head” for solos, while motifs are fragmented and abstracted to serve as accompaniment. Throughout the disc, the trio alternates between this chromatic harmonic syntax and Webernesque melodic contours spun like spider webs, upon which they improvise with tightly focused interaction."

Art Lange (Point of Departure)