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FLID 001 ~ POLAND ~ Jazz

Recorded: 2011 - 2012 Released: 2012

This is the fourth album by the Polish vocalist Beata PrzybytekFind albums by this artist and her debut as a singer / songwriter. After releasing three consecutive albums between 2003 and 2005, Przybytek took almost seven years to come up with this album, which presents sixteen songs written by her to lyrics (in English) by Alicja MaciejowskaFind albums by this artist (thirteen songs) and her own (the remaining three songs). She is accompanied by a wonderful ensemble of gifted and sympathetic instrumentalists, which includes the keyboardist / arranger Tomasz KalwakFind albums by this artist, who is responsible for the truly excellent and highly skilled musical settings created for her songs. Other players include guitarist Damian KuraszFind albums by this artist, pianist Boguslaw KaczmarFind albums by this artist, bassists Tomasz KupiecFind albums by this artist and Adam KowalewskiFind albums by this artist, drummers Arek SkolikFind albums by this artist, Krzysztof DziedzicFind albums by this artist and Filip MozulFind albums by this artist and percussionist Slawomir BernyFind albums by this artist. Several guest musicians also appear, among them trumpeter Piotr WojtasikFind albums by this artist, vibraphonist Bernard MaseliFind albums by this artist, organist Jan SmoczynskiFind albums by this artist and others.

Przybytek started her career as a Jazz vocalist, but her last album ("WonderlandFind albums with this title"), which comprised entirely of songs by Stevie WonderFind albums by this artist, saw her already flirting with Pop, Soul and Rhythm and Blues. This album, which focuses on her songwriting as much, if not more, as on her performances, takes her into new territory, which in a beautiful amalgam of Pop, Blues, Gospel, Soul and Jazz. The artistic level of her songwriting is formidable and these sixteen songs are all jewels in their own right, quite diverse and beautifully full of character. I must admit that at first hearing I could hardly believe my ears as I havent heard such a sublime collection of new songs in a very long time.

The vocal performances are also first-class, somewhat similar to the mannerisms of Etta JamesFind albums by this artist / Amy WinehouseFind albums by this artist, but with a wonderfully warm tone and total control of timbre and expression. Its a pity she chose to sing in English as I personally am quite convinced that if she sang these songs in her native language the result would have been even more stunning. Well, one cant win them all. Still this is one of the best albums of its kind that Ive heard in a very long time.

The instrumental parts are, as already mentioned, simply delightful. Each song gets quite a different treatment, which keeps the album changing mood and ambiance often, as well as the instrumentation. The guest musicians get to deliver their respective solo spots and it sure looks like a great time was had by all during the recording sessions.

This album is also a wonderful example of high quality music, which can be overtly accessible, without compromising even an iota of its intrinsic value. Every music lover should have a field day with this brilliant piece of music. Hats off, Beata! Silesia rulez again!
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