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ALPAKA 002 (Barcode: 191924127741) ~ POLAND ~ Jazz

Recorded: 2017 Released: 2017

This is the debut album by young Polish Jazz ensemble called Michal Bak QuartettoFind albums by this artist (the Italian reference remains obscure), led by bassist / composer Michal BakFind albums by this artist and also featuring trumpeter Emil MiszkFind albums by this artist, saxophonist Piotr CheckiFind albums by this artist and drummer Slawomir KoryznoFind albums by this artist. Miszk, Checki and Koryzno are also members of the AlgorhythmFind albums by this artist quintet, with another bass player and a pianist. The album presents nine original compositions, all by Bak.

In a recent conversation with a fellow Polish Jazz journalist the subject of debut albums by young Polish Jazz groups released in 2017 came up and the conclusion was that relatively very few of those albums dealt with Free (at least to some degree) Jazz, concentrating mostly on melody and harmony. This album, although still based on melodic themes, demonstrates a much wider degree of freedom, which balances the overall output very nicely.

The music is typical Modern Polish Jazz, based on beautifully lyrical / melancholic compositions, expanded into lengthy statements, full of opportunities for improvisation by the quartet members, which here demonstrate the freedom and space which can be achieved within music, which is still within the traditional boundaries of the idiom.

All the players on this album demonstrate a high level of professionalism and obvious talent, and to those who follow their consecutive recordings, also a consistent path of personal development. The fact that this quartet is pianoless and still manages to sound fully harmonic speaks firmly as to the quality of these musicians and their mutual respect and ability to cooperate. Miszk plays some superb solo trumpet parts and is also a great accompanist when playing behind Checki, who is the romantic soul most of the time but also delivers some truly biting solos. Bak gets a lot of exposure as a bassist, both as part of the rhythm section and as a soloist, and his performances are all top notch. Koryzno is the rhythm machine driving the music forward and he is excellent both as an illustrator on the slow and free parts and the pusher behind the up-tempo swinging parts, demonstrating an overall exquisite drumming technique and feel.

Overall this is an impressive debut album, which presents daring, intelligent and adventurous music and brilliant personal abilities by the players. Connoisseurs of Modern Jazz, especially those following the Polish Jazz scene, are in for a refreshing, invigoration experience. Definitely one of the most interesting debuts of 2017 highly recommended!
Updated: 18/11/2017Posted: 18/11/2017CD 1 Digipak Recommend To A Friend

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