Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Max Johnson - Quartet [Not Two]

Mark Whitecage - alto saxophone, clarinet
Steve Swell - trombone
Max Johnson - bass
Tyshawn Sorey - drums

Not Two 2012

I think any reader of this blog is familiar with the names of Steve Swell, Mark Whitecage and Tyshawn Sorey. Who is Max Johnson you ask? Well, Max Johnson is the guy who gathered the three above mentioned in his band to release his debut cd. Such manpower in the hands of a new guy demand attention as well as caution.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Jazz Alchemist Radio 25.02.13 with VEIN, Ivo Perelman, Peter Brotzmann and Fred Katz

For this week radio playlist I propose to you something old and something new, on both side of the jazz stream. The tracklist represent:
- shorter, yet intense excerpts from the monster performance by Peter Brotzmann with Masahiko Sato and Takeo Moriyama released on the cd "Yatagarasu"

I also reinstated the "calendar" section and today's hero is Fred Katz, a premier jazz cello player. Fred Katz was born on 25.02.1919, you can enjoy an original piece of him with Chico Hamilton Quintet as well as fragments of a tribute cd recorded by Fred Lonberg-Holm.

Enjoy and stay tuned.
Ivo Perlman. 

VEIN - Summertime
VEIN - It Ain't Necessarily So
VEIN - There's a Boat Dat's Leavin' S
VEIN ft. David Liebman - Evolution
Ivo Perelman - Mystery in Sao Christovao
Ivo Perelman - The Sloth
Ivo Perelman - Living Jelly
Fred Katz with Chico Hamilton Quintet - Pluck It
Fred Lonberg-Holm Valeninte Trio - The Squimp
Fred Lonberg-Holm Valeninte Trio - The Vidiot
Fred Lonberg-Holm Valeninte Trio - I Know II (short version)
Peter Brotzmann, Masihoko Sato, Takeo Moriyama - Autumn Drizzle
Peter Brotzmann, Masihoko Sato, Takeo Moriyama - Frozen Whistle

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Krakow concert schedule 24.02 - 03.03

You're in Krakow and you're not sure what to do? Good live music is the right answer ;).
I'll try to fix such post weekly, anyway below are some events that you might find interesting in the next few days:

24.02 Olbrzym and Kurdupel at Alchemia
Saxophone - bass improvising duo at Alchemia. The group made its stamp on 2012 with their excellent debut longplay cd "Six Philosophical Games".
If you have any doubts - listen below to the "double duo" concert where the Olbrzym and Kurdupel (which means "a giant and a shorty one") is joined by Mikolaj Trzaska and Tomek Sowinski.

25.02 Jacek Kochan & Co at PIEC'Art.
D. Wania (piano), M. Kupczak (bass) and J. Kochan (drums) will play own interpretations of music by polisz modern composed Wladylaw Lutoslawski as well as their own pieces. Could be very interesting. 

26.02 NIL - radio play open practice at Literki 
A practice session for a radio play open for audience. Tomek Choloniewski (drums), Kondrad Geca (electronics) and Trzewiczek (voice, director) will appear. Free entrance.

The trio that existed for may years on the fringe of pop culture had a big break thanks to a music tv show. Three vocalists's music combines together influences of jazz, classical, pop and beat box. High quality mixture.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Robinson/ Zerang/ Roginski/ Zimpel - Yemen (music of the Yemenite Jews) [Multikulti]

Perry Robinson - clarinet, ocarina
Waclaw Zimpel - bass clarinet, clarinet
Raphael Roginski - guitar
Michael Zerang - drums, frame drum, darabuka

Multikulti 2012

The music on the cd was first presented as a special project, part of the Vth Tzadik Poznan Festival. As most of the material is taken directly from the live recording (with just one track from a session recorded the following day) I'll remind the review I wrote after that evening:

A special project of the festival ws presented on the final evening - a band created on the occasion of the festival , to present music of the Yemenite Jews. Reconstruction from archival notations of songs 5000 years old.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Ivo Perelman on Leo Records part 1 - "Family Ties" and Living Jelly" with Joe Morris and Gerald Cleaver

Ivo Perelman continues the supreme series of albums entitled after works by Brazilian writer Clarice Lispector (you can find on the blog more about "Stream of Life" duo with Brian Wilson as well as "Hour of the Star" by the quartet with M. Shipp, J. Morris and G. Cleaver). I can't speak for the quality of books but I the consistent  quality of the albums is something to behold. 
In 2012 Leo Records released 6 new albums by Ivo and a collective review seems only logical and long overdue.

Family Ties

Ivo Perelman - tenor sax, kazoo, mouthpiece
Joe Morris - bass
Gerald Cleaver - drums

Leo Records 2012

Two of the tracks presented on "Hour of the Star" were actually recorded as a pianoless trio and it comes as no surprise the three wanted to play more together. Without the anchor of the Matthew Shipp's piano the saxophone is freer yet the music gets much lighter, while the perfect timekeeping by the Joe Morris - Gerald Cleaver team is even more transparent and essential.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Shofar - The North Ameriacan Tour

Mikolaj Trzaska is one of the main heroes of this blog. The Shofar trio with Trzaska, Roginski and Moretti goes on tour to USA. Check the press info and schedule to see if you can catch them. Don't miss out! 

The trio have just released their second cd, hopefully I'll be able to write more about it soon.

Instead of a radio playlist I link down the pre-release presentation of the album (available for only a couple of days more).

The North American Tour 

Thursday, February 21, 2013 - Sunday, March 3, 2013 

February 21, 2013, 7:30 pm

David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center
New York City

February 23, 2013, 9 pm

Protest Series at Heaven Gallery
Chicago, IL

February 24, 2013, 10 pm

Hungry Brain
Chicago, IL

February 25, 2013, 7:30 pm

2013 Chutzpah! Festival
Vancouver, Canada

February 26, 2013, 7:30pm

The Royal Room
Seattle, WA

February 27, 2013, 9 pm 
Los Angeles, CA

March 2, 2013, 8 pm

28th Jewish Music Festival
Berkeley, CA
7 pm Pre-concert talk
with Ruth Ellen Gruber

March 3, 2013, 8 pm - 2 sets
Blue Monk
Portland, OR 

Shofar presents an improvisational twist on traditional Hasidic melodies, through the wild minds of three leading Polish musicians Raphael Roginski, Mikolaj Trzaska and Macio Moretti. The impulse to pursue this area of interest was a discovery of a collection of Hasidic songs by Moshe Beregovski (1892-1961) who, beginning in the 1920s, researched and wrote about Jewish music. The concept behind this project is to carry on the Jewish musical traditions, while also searching for a common denominator shared by Hasidic music and free jazz. 

The trio's repertoire includes nigunim, or religious songs meant to induce a state of religious ecstasy, freylakhs of a more dancelike nature, as well as pieces derived from Jewish liturgy. Unchanged in form, this material unlocks the whole broad spectrum of Hasidic music and culture. As composers and performers, Raphael Roginski has focussed on jazz-influenced improvisation and folk music; Mikolaj Trzaska explores new wave, free jazz, modern rock and poetry; and Macio Moretti covers grind/punk, twisted country and western, improv, psychedelic and pseudojazz.

Shofar concerts are presented by David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center, Chutzpah! Festival, Jewish Music Festival in collaboration with the Polish Cultural Institute New York. Concerts in Berkeley co-presented with the Polish Cultural Institute New York and co-sponsored by the Taube Foundation for Jewish Life and Culture, in association with the Israel Center in San Francisco, the Consulate of Israel, and the Consulate of Poland in Los Angeles. Additional Shofar concerts are presented by Protest Series at Heaven Gallery, Hungry Brain, the Royal Room, Earshot Jazz, bluewhale and the Blue Monk in collaboration with the Polish Cultural Institute New York. Concert in Los Angeles is presented in collaboration with the KulturePlus Productions. 

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Shock Wave at Literki (Improwizje series. 12.02)

Literki, thanks to the improwizje series, begins to confirm its position as the place for improvised music, one possibly more focused on presenting local musicians than Alchemia club. 
The end of the three-days mini-festival presented us with a concert by a young group Shock Wave, its members are very active on locas scene and I have a strong feeling they will soon mix up some national-wide attention (as far as jazz music can). 

This most recent generation of musicians take full advantage of academic education but doesn't follow the academic rules. They flirt willingly with free and experimental, while displaying a formiddable musicianship. Shock Wave is such a group. They start by destroing with punk energy a jazz standard, the music is filled with rock energy and punk attitude. Slawek Pezda's agressive tone and fluid solos merge greatly with the ankle-breaking drum'n'bass or rock patterns. The electric violin reinforces the rock aspects while the muscular bass keeps the music well anchored.
Somoe other musicians join the quartet for a jam in the second part of the night and things get even more interesting.
Those guys (and girl) has still a long way to go but their passion is inspiring and refreshing. The anarchy of their playing reminds you of The Thing (in fact they play one of the tunes the trio often performs), the highlight of the evening is the last track - simply and rhythmic riff base, somehow reminding me of the monumental marching Albert Ayler tunes. Quite epic.

Shock Wave: Dominika Rusinowska- el.vln.
Sławek Pezda- tenor sax
Thomas Kolarczyk- db
Patryk Dobosz- dr

Literki. Krakow. 12.02.13

Saturday, February 16, 2013

interview with Michael Arbenz (VEIN trio)

I've put already on the blog some impressions of the VEIN trio's music. The evening before the trio's two concerts in Krakow I had a little chat with trio's piano player Michael Arbenz. Here are some fragmets of the conversation:

1. About how ”Porgy & Bess” trio recording fits into two great traditions – that of Gershwin music and that of a piano trio.

I'd like to add another tradition which Gershwin's music brings together. That's jazz music and the classical. We all three studied classical music. We asked ourselves how can we bring together our backrounds - jazz, european, classical, how could we make the all meet in the american tradition and Gershwin was kind of a perfect match. He's one of the most popular composers but what was important for us is just that he wrote great tunes. So many interpretions of Gershwin. „Summertime” is the most recorded jazz tune of all time.
There's also the tradition of playing „Porgy & Bess”, take Louis and Ella recording, Miles Davis with Gil Evans and many more, it was another one that we wanted to refer to.
As for the piano trio it's always a great challenge, there were so many of them. Great trios, so many great interpretions of Gershwin also. „Summertime” is the most recorded jazz tune of all time.
This all being said, we wanted to modify the tunes, make them a bit different. Gerswhin's tunes are so strong that you can't change them too much so you don't recognize them. We were searching the line, the way it would remain the same tune but translated today world, language of today jazz.

2. About the beginnings of jazz and music fascination.

Me and my twin brother,Florian, we actually started listening to jazz very early. Our parents had a record collection, they're both classical musicians but loved jazz very much. We started to listen to this music very early, quite by chance. Armstrong, Django Reinhardt, Benny Goodman we loved it all a lot, also old piano players like Fats Waller, Art Tatum. We jost gut sucked into it.
Later on, it would seem strange nowadays, we loved Miles Davis, John Coltrane, we didn't care much about pop music. Of course we liked in htese years guys like Mike Stern, Brecker Brothers, fusion stuff. Maybe more than today.
We had listened to the jazz history, starting with the old stuff and it developed from here. I think it can be heard in our music that we are referring to the old styles, Art Tatum, Oscar Peterson, all those influences are natural to us and I can't really explain it.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

VEIN trio ("Porgy & Bess" / "Live - Lemuria" and at PiecART) + interview

Michael Arbenz - piano
Thomas Lahms - bass
Florian Arbenz  - drums

"Porgy & Bess" Unit Records 2011

David Liebman - tenor and soprano sax

"Live - Lemuria" Unit Records 2012

VEIN trio are twin brothers Michael Arbenz (piano), Florian Arbenz (drums) and Thomas Lahms (bass). You can hear them on their own on the „Porgy & Bess” (Unit Records 2011) as well as „Live – Lemuria” with Dave Liebman (Unit Records 2012).

The first cd puts an original spin on some of the tunes from the Gershwin's famous opera. „I got plenty o' nuttin'” strides nicely on the fast piano bass-lines. „I loves you Porgy” is lush and delicate as it's supposed to.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Jachna / Buhl - Tapes [Milleu L'Acephale]

Cukunft rocked on the Cheder Cafe on saturday evening, yesterday the trio Gorczynski / Mazur / Choloniewski painted some abstracts at Literki to start the mini-fest of Improwizje - it continues tonight and I hope you'll be there.

For those of you who can't be there, instead of a new radio playlist I propose:


Wojtek Jachna - trumpet, electronics
Jacek Buhl - drums, electronics

Milleu L'Acephale 2013

The music combines the free spirit and melodic drive together. "Tapes" are exactly what the title say - a selection from duo's practice sessions recorded on Grundig casette recorded, transferred by Marcin Dymiter.
What the release lacks in sound quality it makes up plenty in the music and as a song tells more than a thousand words (or was it a picture?) just listen to the album yourself - it is published as a free download on bandcamp.


Saturday, February 9, 2013

Concerts reminder

It was a busy week, I've some writing to do in the weekend, in the meantime I'd wanted to remind you what's to do these evening in Krakow:

Saturday 09.02
Cheder Cafe celebrates its 4th birthday with Cukunft band. Come, eat hummus and enjoy music. 

Sunday-Tuesday 10-12.02
Mini-festival Improwizje at Literki. 

Wednesday 13.02
A special evening with Kracow's improvisers at Alchemia. The concert will be broadcasted by the Polish National Radio 2

Hope to see you there!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Live music everywhere. Concerts, concerts, concerts

Winter/Holiday/New Year break is over everyone. Krakow is busy once again with live music and I'd like to recommend you some live events one might enjoy the coming evening.

05.02 Noisezone at Alchemia
The noise-jazz trio begun the Autumn Festival playing with Peter Brotzmann, they're back in Krakow

06.02 Chlopcy Kontra Basia at Hard Rock Cafe
I've praised this trio for their jazzy grooves, folk melodics and witty lyrics on a couple of occasions. They've noticeably widened their audience thanks to the TV exposure in a music show and deservingly so.

06/07.02 Vein at PIEC'Art
A dynamic modern jazz piano trio that caught some attention with their recent collaboration with a sax master Dave Liebman.

09.02 Cukunft at Cafe Cheder
Cheder Cafe is celebrating its 4th birthday and the Cukunft band  will be there to highlight the event. Two clarinets, guitar and drums for a myriad of jazz and klez and fun.

10-12.02 Improwizje mini-festival at Literki

Three days of concerts under the supervision of the Improwizje series curator bringing both veterans and young talents of improvising scene. High expectations. Very recommended.
10. Gorczynski / Mazur / Choloniewski
11. Strycharski / Mazur
12. Shock Wawe - Pezda / Rusinowska / Kolarczyk / Dobosz

11.02 Tomasz Stanko New York Quartet at Opera Krakowska

Tomasz Stanko brings to Krakow a quartet with David Virelles, Thomas Morgan and Gerald Cleaver to present music from his new cd "Wislawa" dedicated to the late poet Wislawa Szymborska. 
Any jazz fan in Poland have probably already taken notice of the project and awaits the music impatiently.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Jazz Alchemist Radio with Monoswezi, Stefan Pasborg, DKV and Whitney

Here's another one where I present the cds reviewed recently on the blog. The albums featured are:
Monoswezi - The Village

Hope you'll enjoy it. The tracklist is:

Monoswezi - Ndinewe
Monoswezi - Mapfunde
Monoswezi - Nhemamsasa
Stefan Pasborg - Black Dog
Stefan Pasborg - Iron Man
Stefan Pasborg - Paint It Black
DKV Trio - Milwaukee 30.12.2010 set 2