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    These experienced musicians know how to weave a complex, captivating stories with few strokes of imaginative sounds, austere yet elegant, subtle but full of nuances. “Endless” visits Far-Eastern, terrains, flows in a balladic narrative and matures in a touching, playful dance of court and spark between Baars, playing the clarinet, and Draksler. “For Toby” suggests a complete different dialog between Baars and Draksler. He sings gently with his tenor sax while she pounds the piano keys in a hyper-dramatic manner while Williamson bowed bass stands in the middle. Baars and Draksler return to the minimalist dance mode on the lyrical, emotional “Now”.
    “Catch the Moon” is a joyful, melodious game between Draksler, Williamson and Baars, all chasing the reflection of the moon, mirrored in their playful, concise gestures. The trio paints the sparse, free-improvised “Receding Mountains” with gentle, subtle touches of rich colors, allowing this free-form texture to remain mysterious. The austere, minimalist atmosphere of the last pieces, “The First Sea” and “There” tells volumes despite its haiku-like profound restraint. No Queen Rises has powerful, suggestive impact. It challenges, teases, and occasionally comforts the listener, but always compensates with masterful performances and inspiring music.
    Eyal Hareuveni
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1.
2.
Endless 04:52
3.
For Toby 07:12
4.
Now 05:58
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9.
There 07:17

about

Dutch reedman Ab Baars goes out of his way to avoid sentiment in his playing. He plots courses that veer willfully from melodic to shrill, but always remains in control. The most striking aspect of Fish-scale Sunrise, named after a poem by Wallace Stevens, is how much this approach to improvising is reflected in his composing too. Slovenian pianist Kaja Draksler and expat Canadian bassist Joe Williamson thoroughly buy into his conception, realizing the pieces in the reedman's image, yet still retaining their own voices. Draksler, who is making quite a name for herself from her Amsterdam base, often provides some of the structural framework for the pieces. At times she recalls a slowed down version of Cecil Taylor with her jagged motifs. By shouldering that responsibility she leaves Williamson free to roam widely without the need to hold down a pulse, often appearing the wild card. Jphn Sharpe

credits

released September 28, 2018

Bass – Joe Williamson
Piano – Kaja Draksler
Tenor Saxophone, Clarinet – Ab Baars

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Relative Pitch Records New York, New York

NYC-based independent record label specializing in avant-garde, free jazz, free improvisation, experimental.

instagram.com/relativepitchrecords

Video:
youtube.com/KjReilly

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