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WANJA SLAVIN / LOTUS EATERS ~ SALVATION
WHYPLAYJAZZ 035 (Barcode: 4250459999356) ~ GERMANY ~ Jazz

Recorded: 2016 - 2017 Released: 2018

This is the second album by German saxophonist / composer Wanja SlavinFind albums by this artist and his European Lotus Eaters ensemble, recorded over a period of almost a year in three studios and with three slightly different lineups of the ensemble. The collective personnel includes some of the best contemporary European Jazz musicians mostly resident in Berlin: British trumpeter Tom ArthursFind albums by this artist, Norwegian trumpeter Erik Kimestad PedersenFind albums by this artist, German saxophonist Philipp GropperFind albums by this artist, German pianist Rainer BohmFind albums by this artist, Danish bassist Andreas LangFind albums by this artist, Swedish bassist Petter EldhFind albums by this artist, German bassist Bernhard MeyerFind albums by this artist, German drummer Tobias BackhausFind albums by this artist, Latvian drummer Ivars ArutyunyanFind albums by this artist and finally American drummer Nasheet WaitsFind albums by this artist. The album presents seven pieces, six of which are original compositions by Slavin and one is standard.

From the very first notes of the album it is immediately apparent that this is a modern Jazz masterpiece in every respect. The melody based compositions are dressed up in contemporary arrangements, which include unusual rhythmic patterns and harmonic structures, creating a unique kaleidoscope of superb music, which is fascinating from start to finish and does not cease to explore uncharted territory and create new aural vistas. The level of these compositions is completely breathtaking and has very little competition elsewhere within music belonging to the same Jazz dialect. The ability to create an amalgam of the Jazz tradition, Classical influences and up to date approach, which incorporates elements form electronic music and above all allows a generous amount of space and freedom for improvisation is overall extremely effective.

Combined with the creative performance abilities by these excellent European musicians, the overall result that is put in front of the listener as simply a knockout. The album is full of exquisite solos by the ensemble members and of course the ensemble performance as a whole is marvelous. The subtle, but easily distinguishable differences between the three lineups are also a most effective factor that makes this music so powerful.

This album is a brilliant example of what European Jazz is all about; it is evident in its highly aesthetic values, its elegance and subtlety, its refinement and sophistication, which is simply unmatched anywhere else on this planet. The young Jazz Artists from Berlin, Warsaw, Copenhagen and Oslo manage to take the Jazz idiom to the next level, leaving the old world tarried far behind.

If this album is an indication as to what can be expected in 2018, life is definitely worth living and there is no better way to kickoff another year of sublime music!
Updated: 02/03/2018Posted: 02/03/2018CD 1 Mini-Sleeve Recommend To A Friend

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