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Jazz - Verschenen op 23 oktober 2020 | Decca (UMO)

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In 2015, Melody Gardot stepped out of her comfort zone with Currency of Man, an album which suited her entirely but displayed a more soul’n’blues side. That is not to say that her brilliant past efforts were not in keeping with her musical personality, but it was with this record that she confirmed her love for Philadelphia, the town in which she grew up and where groove holds a different meaning.  Five years later, Sunset in the Blue holds all the hallmarks of a return to the singer’s old days which made Melody Gardot’s name. The album is a stripped-back approach to jazz and bossa-nova as imposed by the unexpected circumstances of the year 2020. When the album was beginning development, the pandemic brought a halt to everything an forced the American to rethink the project. She hence proposed that her associates, spread out all over the world, work from a distance. Melody Gardot was based in Paris, her arranger and conductor Vince Mendoza in Los Angeles and the majority of her musicians in England! Despite these constraints, the miracle record was on course for creation which would span a period of roughly five months. And so, Mendoza found himself conducting on-screen from California with musicians playing in London’s Abbey Road Studios (things weren’t made any easier considering the various time-differences). In addition to Mendoza, Melody Grant recruited a set of silky smooth sound connoisseurs who were also instrumental in the success of 2009’s My One and Only Thrill: the producer Larry Klein and sound engineer Al Schmitt.Upon listening to the end result, however, we soon forget the last-minute DIY means with which this album was made. Because throughout Sunset in the Blue, Melody Gardot maintains a fascinatingly solid and intimate direction. Here we see a return to Gardot whispering hypnotically into the ear as she sings amid intermittent piano phrases and guitars. Her voice gracefully lounges upon a bed of refined and perfectly balanced violin strings. This formula reaches an irresistible climax with the album’s title track as she turns to her much-loved Brazil with tracks like Ninguém, Ninguém and Um Beljo, before she returns to the exquisite-sounding Moon River and I Fall in Love too Easily. A beautiful album which finishes with a somewhat intrusive track, Little Something, a pop duet with Sting that doesn’t really fit in with Sunset in the Blue’s general mood. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Jazz - Verschenen op 21 februari 2020 | Nonesuch

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According to Pat Metheny, From This Place is not just another album to add to his already super-size discography. “I have been waiting my whole life to make this record,” the guitarist from Missouri says outright. “It’s a kind of musical culmination, reflecting a wide range of expressions that have interested me over the years, scaled across a large canvas, presented in a way that offers the kind of opportunities for communication that can only be earned with a group of musicians who have spent hundreds of nights together on the bandstand.” With his longtime collaborator, drummer Antonio Sanchez along with bassist Linda May Han Oh, pianist Gwilym Simcock and the Hollywood Studio Symphony conducted by Joel McNeely, Metheny begins his ambitious project with a composition of over thirteen minutes, America Undefined, centred around a beautiful arrangement by Gil Goldstein. The lyricism of the theme, the theatrical arches and the inspired but never over zealous interjections from the guitar come together to form this majestic landscape. Pat Metheny manages to avoid falling into the classic traps of symphonic jazz, instead proving to be quite the master of creating an amazing melodic line. This is not surprising, as already with the release of As Falls Wichita, So Falls Wichita Falls with ECM in 1981, an album he made with keyboard player Lyle Mays (who passed away 15 days before the release of From This Place), he excelled in perfectly calibrated lyrical narration. This level of craftsmanship returns on Same River, a prime example of the kind of composition that could easily fall into the banal or the tear-jerking but manages to remain purely beautiful. With Meshell Ndegeocello on vocals, Grégoire Maret on the harmonica and Luis Conte on percussion for certain tracks, the American guitarist has carefully chosen his guests, whose contributions only serve to confirm the precision of Metheny’s vision, a concept much more easily understood after listening to the album in full. © Max Dembo/Qobuz
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Vocale jazz - Verschenen op 28 augustus 2020 | Blue Note

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With his sixth album, Gregory Porter excels once again in perfectly blending jazz, soul, rhythm'n'blues, pop and gospel. In addition to being blessed with a voice of pure velvet (so cliché, but so true), the Californian, who knows Great Black Music inside out, is also a real wordsmith. In these troubled times, Gregory Porter's music refreshes and rejuvenates, like on "Revival Song," a sort of neo-gospel hymn that ignites the soul and frees the body. This sense of wellbeing can also be felt when Porter puts on his crooner hat on "If Love Is Overrated" or when he channels his inner Marvin Gaye and George Benson on "Faith In Love." Brilliantly produced by Troy Miller (Laura Mvula, Jamie Cullum, Emili Sandé), All Rise propels the American singer towards greater global recognition, reaching audiences well outside the jazz sphere. © Max Dembo/Qobuz
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Moderne jazz - Verschenen op 12 juni 2020 | Blue Note

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There was The Beatles by The Beatles, The Stooges by The Stooges, Cypress Hill by Cypress Hill, Metallica by Metallica – the list goes on. Naming an album after yourself tends to signal either the first chapter of your music, or the final one. For GoGo Penguin, GoGo Penguin represents the latter as a brief decade of enchanting musical exploration draws to a close for pianist Chris Illingworth, drummer Rob Turner and bassist Nick Blacka. The Manchester trio had established their own unique style and their well-balanced blend of contemporary jazz, electronic music and minimalism is captured perfectly in this 2020 vintage. With an album like this, GoGo Penguin increasingly move away from the legacy left behind by EST (the defunct Esbjörn Svensson Trio), the masters of minimalism (Steve Reich, Philip Glass) and of electronic music (Aphex Twin, Roni Size) who were their main influences in their early days. Illingworth explains, “What I’ve been able to do on the piano – it’s the sort of thing I’ve been trying to get towards, in what I can physically play and what I can do to express who I am. And I know that the other guys take the same pride themselves in what they’ve contributed. We’ve all found our place, we’ve all got that confidence of being able to say, ‘This is how I want to play my instrument, and this is how we want to play as a band – that thing we’ve always been aiming for”. For the first time, GoGo Penguin took their time to make this album and spent six months writing and two weeks recording and experimenting. It was a relatively calm experience but also emotional, as Turner explains, “This time, there's a lot more facing the realities of becoming older, facing mortality, and watching people that you care about being very close to death. At the same time, Chris (Illingworth) became a dad. The longer you live, the more complicated your reality becomes, so we felt our music had to reflect that”. And this is reflected in the improvisations as well as the ambient lyrical flights in GoGo Penguin, inflected with deep emotional resonance. In F Maj Pixie, the power behind Nick Blacka’s bassline acts like the beating heart of the track. Overall, this fifth studio album is all about emotion and delicate melodies. The clean production is free of unnecessary flourishes and GoGo Penguin get straight to the point in GoGo Penguin. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Jazz - Verschenen op 27 maart 2020 | Blue Note Records

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Her mentor Prince said her voice could melt snow. A gift confirmed on The Women Who Raised Me, Kandace Springs' third album, which is quietly earning the artist a place at the heart of the vast family of contemporary jazz'n'soul singers. As the title of her 2020 release suggests, the Nashville native living in New York pays tribute to all those who influenced and inspired her, from Ella Fitzgerald to Roberta Flack, Astrud Gilberto, Lauryn Hill, Billie Holiday, Diana Krall, Carmen McRae, Bonnie Raitt, Sade, Nina Simone, Dusty Springfield and especially Norah Jones, one of her idols, who features on a track (Angel Eyes). Produced, like Soul Eyes, (her first album of 2016) by the expert in ultra-slick sound Larry Klein, The Women Who Raised Me also brings on board the saxophonists David Sanborn (I Put a Spell on You) and Chris Potter (Gentle Rain, Loneliness), trumpeter Avishai Cohen (I Can't Make You Love Me and Pearls), bassist Christian McBride (Devil May Care) and the flautist Elena Pinderhughes (Ex-Factor and Killing Me Softly With His Song). They bring virtuoso refinement to this album's collection of well-chosen covers. Special mention must go to Sade's Pearls, spurred on by a purring Avishai Cohen, and Lauryn Hill's Ex-Factor. This album also confirms the instrumental talents of Kandace Springs, who is just as comfortable at the piano as at the Fender Rhodes. A restrained virtuoso helped by the reserved trio of Steve Cardenas on guitar, Scott Colley on bass and Clarence Penn on drums. It is this ocean of subtlety and finely-measured power that makes these covers, sung with sensuality but above all conviction, very endearing. © Clotilde Maréchal / Qobuz
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Jazz - Verschenen op 1 januari 1975 | ECM

Onderscheidingen The Qobuz Ideal Discography - Qobuz Referentie
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Jazz - Verschenen op 10 juli 2020 | Nonesuch

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Joshua Redman, Brad Mehldau, Christian McBride and Brian Blade. A mere glance at RoundAgain’s line-up is enough to arouse a sense of collective hysteria among jazz fans. The original members of Joshua Redman's first quartet haven’t recorded together since MoodWing was released in 1994. “We would have done it ten years ago if it were up to me”, explains Mehldau, “Josh, Christian and Brian are all my heroes. It’s like playing with The Avengers!” It’s a worthy comparison seeing as these four really are considered superheroes in today’s jazzosphere. In almost a quarter of a century, their aura and playing has developed in an exponential way, to the point that the quartet has achieved an irrevocable spiritual chemistry. On this brand-new album (three compositions by Redman, two by Mehldau, and one each for McBride and Blade), they immediately show off a bond which allows them to perform extraordinary and colossal swing. Under the hood of this sparkling, perplexing yet vintage Rolls Royce of a record, RoundAgain is a meaningful four-way conversation. From beginning (Undertow) to end (Your Part to Play), mutual respect is at the heart of their drive and direction; even Redman’s verbose saxophone never steals the spotlight. Let’s just hope that we won’t have to wait another 26 years before they do it all again… © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Jazz - Verschenen op 20 maart 2020 | World Circuit

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Jazz - Verschenen op 15 november 2013 | Columbia - Legacy

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen The Qobuz Ideal Discography - Hi-Res Audio
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Jazz - Verschenen op 14 februari 2020 | ECM

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A sage piano stylist audibly influenced by Basie and Monk among others, Carla Bley has over the past 60 years also become one of jazz's preeminent composers. Originally influenced by '60s jazz avant-garde, Bley, as evidenced by her latest, Life Goes On, has fashioned her own jazz ethos—what ECM's Manfred Eicher has called her "radical originality." In jazz groups of any size longevity is often impossible as the essence of the music is often dependent on the potential of new combinations of talent, and yet a large part of Bley's recent success is keyed by her working trio of bassist/life partner Steve Swallow and saxophonist Andy Sheppard, who've been together for 25 years. Based around three suites—her most preferred form of composition—the lean and spacious Life Goes On is wonderfully confident and distinct. The opening movement of the title track is sly blues before turning to two parts that explore her trademark melodic mingling of classical music discipline and free jazz adventure. It concludes with "And Then One Day," where Bley holds down the rhythm with a repeated figure, over which Sheppard plays jaunty lines that have more than a whiff of Paul Desmond's cool tone. "Beautiful Telephones," based upon the current chief executive's comment about the Oval Office's exceptional phones, begins with Bley downshifting emotionally and exploring a more somber mood with Swallow plucking out his notes and Sheppard's tenor saxophone providing an equally unsettling counterpoint. In this work's final movement, the tempos pick up and her characteristic humor comes to the fore as she wryly quotes "The Battle Hymn of the Republic," "The Star-Spangled Banner," "America the Beautiful," and other patriotic hymns in a modern echo of her '70s composition, "Spangled Banner Minor and Other Patriotic Songs." The final suite, "Copycat" explores the hallowed jazz device of call-and-response as a conversation between three supremely accomplished players, whose clairvoyant togetherness shifts between agreeable and discordant. While it's right to applaud the current rush of praise for the fresh energies that youth are bringing to music these days, the deep wisdom and impeccable craft of a pioneer like Bley deserves to be equally acclaimed. © Robert Baird / Qobuz
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Jazz - Verschenen op 21 augustus 2020 | Concord Jazz

Hi-Res Onderscheidingen Pitchfork: Best New Music - Qobuzism
Although this release is Nubya Garcia's first real solo album, the artist is accustomed to being showered with praise, awards, prizes, projects and collaborations. At 29 years old, the Londoner is undoubtedly one of the major players on the new British jazz scene and her colourful, full-bodied saxophone playing has already resonated on numerous recordings such as those of the groups Nérija and Maisha, and on two thirds of We Out Here (2018), the iconic compilation album from Gilles Peterson’s Brownswood label which united the big names on the contemporary scene. It is with some of these musicians that she has recorded Source. Joined by Joe Armon-Jones (keys), Daniel Casimir (bass) and Sam Jones (drums), Garcia was certainly well-equipped to push the boundaries of contemporary jazz and the UK music scene. As is often the case with contemporary UK musicians, Afro-Caribbean and urban sounds come to influence the rhythms as well as the melodies. Such a fusion is often present in UK jazz albums which also have their own unique flavours. The influence of Herbie Hancock (from the Headhunters period/early Columbia Records) is never far away (Inner Game, The Message Continues). This sensation is amplified by the funky playing of the organ and synth magician, Joe Armon-Jones.But Nubya Garcia is hungry for other sounds and landscapes. On the title track Source, the dub influence is clear. On Together is a Beautiful Place To Be, she deploys a delicate soul and R&B sensuality. Stand With Each Other slaloms between spellbinding nyabinghi rhythms while the aptly named La cumbia me està llamando leaves no doubt as to its influences… All of these sequences paint the picture of a woman well anchored in her time, a musician who is in harmony with her roots and history and puts the notion of collectiveness at the forefront of her artistry. Garcia's notable invitees include Richie Sievwright, Cassie Kinoshi and Sheila Maurice-Grey from the group Kokoroko, the Colombians of La Perla (La cambia me està llamando) as well as Chicago singer Akenya Seymour (Boundless Beings). With this Qobuzissime winning album, Nubya Garcia succeeds in going that little bit further and breaking down the walls that try to hold jazz back. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Vocale jazz - Verschenen op 2 oktober 2020 | Verve

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In 1962, Ella Fitzgerald was at the height of her powers, about midway through recording her now-iconic series of "songbook" albums and, two years earlier, having released a barnstormer of a live album, Ella in Berlin, that solidified her position as one of the most talented and popular musicians working in the jazz idiom. Her only competition at the time was, essentially, Frank Sinatra and herself. During the course of 1962, she would release three albums: two complementary collaborations with Nelson Riddle that further pushed her into crossover territory without tarnishing her credibility or minimizing her skills, and the oft-overlooked Rhythm is My Business, a hard-swinging set that comes off breezy and soulful, but is a remarkable document of the strength of Fitzgerald and her band during this era. And it's that strength that's captured on The Lost Berlin Tapes, recorded in concert at Berlin’s Sportpalast that year. Verve Records founder Norman Granz frequently recorded live sets of many of his acts (Fitzgerald especially), and that's what accounts for both the existence and the remarkable fidelity of these "lost" tapes. (Though they were never truly lost; Granz had just stashed them away). From a performance perspective, it's unbelievable that this concert recording sat unheard for more than a half-century. Brimming with energy and benefiting from the confidence that can only come from being at the top of one's game, Ella and her band careen through 17 songs with a full-throated fervor that's greeted with an equally enthusiastic response from the crowd. The set both swings incredibly hard and evinces a cool, sophisticated polish, a combination that, again, pretty much only she and Sinatra were delivering at this scale during the era. It's the sort of casual excellence that's made to look deceptively easy. (And yes, she aces the version of "Mack the Knife" here.) Releases like this—especially in the aftermath of the devastating Universal fire that destroyed so many iconic album masters and so much unreleased material—prove that, even when we think a barrel has been fully scraped or a vault fully excavated, there will always be warm, welcome surprises to be found in the archives of these legendary artists. © Jason Ferguson/Qobuz
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Jazz - Verschenen op 1 november 2019 | ECM

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Since 1971, Keith Jarrett has been signed to ECM, which has proven to be one of the strongest and most productive relationships between an artist and their label ever. On the 16th July, 2016, the American pianist was performing the final concert of his summer tour in Munich, the stronghold of producer Manfred Eicher. On that evening, Jarrett gave the Bavarian audience an improvisational torrent, which he does so well. However, unlike these same exercises which he has performed over the decades, he delivers them here in short segments. Gone are the 20/30-minute-long tracks like on the famous Köln Concert of 1975, the Sun Bear Concerts of 1976, the Paris Concert of 1990 or the Vienna Concert of 1992! Those from Munich 2016 are separated into twelve parts and give an overview of the multifaceted tastes of their author, a (quite literally) “extra” “ordinary” musician, who can make his instrument swing like the old masters, but can also express himself with musical phrases which are rhythmically and harmoniously very complex, even daring. Over the course of the 86 minutes of Munich 2016, a juggling of silences is favoured over frenzied notes, before a bluesy motif falls away to reveal a chamber music miniature. As the minutes unfold, Jarrett continues to toe the line separating jazz and classical music. He ends this unparalleled tour de force with a fresh take on three classics (Answer Me My Love by Nat King Cole, It’s a Lonesome Old Town made famous by Sinatra and Somewhere Over the Rainbow straight out of The Wizard of Oz), which flawlessly bring this ocean of sound to an end. It is also funny to note that this particular Munich concert will be remembered for reasons beyond the music. After his cover of Over the Rainbow, and in the middle of a standing ovation, some of the audience members were taking pictures of the pianist. Furious, he grabs the microphone and says: “I’m not going to talk about the assholes who are aiming their smartphones at me. I just have one question for them: why did you come?” © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Jazz - Verschenen op 30 maart 1970 | Columbia - Legacy

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen The Qobuz Ideal Discography
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Jazz - Verschenen op 1 september 1980 | ECM

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In 1980, Pat Metheny had already garnered an impressive level of popularity. With sold out tours and their consequential album sales, the guitarist had imposed upon the scene a sound and style which was already being adopted by others. And under the banner of the Pat Metheny Group with Lyle Mays, Mark Egan and Danny Gottlieb, this success was furthered all the more. But some of jazz’s ayatollahs were still somewhat sceptical of his youth-carried success (Metheny himself was only 25 at the time)… With 80/81, which was recorded in May 1980 under the label ECM, things were soon to change. At the long-haired guitarist’s side was Munich-based producer Manfred Eicher. Eicher had the judicious idea of uniting, in Oslo’s Talent Studios, a pianist-free group comprising of four incontestable big names: bassist Charlie Haden, drummer Jack DeJohnette and tenor saxophonists Dewey Redman and Michael Brecker. What could have been merely a flashy and pointless casting turned out to be quite the opposite! On this copious one hour and twenty minute double album that’s as electric (on the beginning and end sections of the record) as it is acoustic, Pat Metheny shows all his colours, and writes the best part of the songs himself. Most importantly, these famed sidemen are stylistically a long-shot from his usual musical compadres. And the exchanges between this most-harmonious five are incredibly inspiring. Former musicians in Keith Jarett’s 1971-1976 quartet and match made in heaven, Charlie Haden and Dewey Redman seamlessly accommodate our young guitar maestro. No shock if you are aware of the relationship Metheny and Haden, both ailing from Missouri (they would record together some years later), have for North American folkloric music which shines through on this album. DeJohnette expertly weaves in and out of this tight canvas and is a central part of 80/81. The drummer carries a voice here that succeeds in standing out whilst remaining in harmony with others. And on songs like Open it is impossible to tear away your ear for even a second from the magical sound of his drumsticks. Finally, the saxophonists voices are opposing yet succeed in cementing their own place (Brecker is on fire on the opening of Two Folk Songs and Redman playful on his solo in Pretty Scattered). A double album which, as the years go by and after multiple listens, will stand strong among the vast discography of its artist. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Jazz - Verschenen op 1 januari 1964 | Impulse!

Hi-Res Onderscheidingen The Qobuz Ideal Discography - Hi-Res Audio
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Jazz - Verschenen op 30 oktober 2020 | Masterworks

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Confirming the cliché “Unity is Strength”, German trumpetist and singer Till Brönner and the American pianist Bob James have cowritten On Vacation, a work of smooth, hedonistic jazz. Before becoming the king of smooth jazz who has been sampled by every rapper on the planet (his Nautilus has ended up on over 400 tracks by the likes of Public Enemy, A Tribe Called Quest and Ghostface Killah), Bob James made pure, hard jazz, accompanying even the great Sarah Vaughan between 1965 and 1968. A music that was light years away from the funky fusion that would make his money throughout the 70s and 80s. It is clearly this ultra-smooth version of Bob James that fascinates Brönner, thirty years his younger. Somewhat like On Vacation’s sleeve, the two musicians have conceived a meticulous and flawless work that features soul themes carried by silky, comforting grooves. One must also note the immense Harvey Mason’s jazz’n’funk drums which feature on over half the tracks. Amidst the ensemble, Till Brönner’s trumpet holds an incredible lightness and his voice, on the few sung tracks, is like that of Donald Fagen, laid back and carefree. But it is ultimately in the more stripped-down songs like Miranda, those which veer off the beaten track where Brönner and James are alone without rhythmic sections, that the sheer extent of their style shines through the most. © Max Dembo/Qobuz
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Moderne jazz - Verschenen op 28 september 2018 | Laborie Jazz

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Jazz - Verschenen op 2 oktober 2020 | SKIP Records

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Jazz - Verschenen op 11 september 2020 | Blue Note Records

Hi-Res Onderscheidingen Qobuzism
Super groups are often over marketed and rather dull. However, this appears to be the complete opposite with Artemis’s debut album, released on Blue Note Records. Behind the Artemis name, Greek Goddess of nature, the hunt and childbirth, are seven internationally acclaimed female musicians, each masters of their craft. At the head of this multi generational roundup, the Canadian pianist and musical director of the project, Renee Rosnes has brought together the Israeli clarinetist Anat Cohen, the Chilean tenor saxophonist Melissa Aldana, the Canadian trompettiste Ingrid Jensen, the Japanese double bassist Noriko Ueda, the American drummer Allison Miller, and on two tracks, the Franco-American vocalist Cécile McLorin Salvant. ‘Each member of Artemis is a unique individual, and this is what music needs, artistic versatility!’, explains Cohen. ‘It’s the people that make life interesting and that make music captivating’. The group’s identity has flourished organically thanks to the seven musicians, each expressing their own vison and perspective yet maintaining a strong homogeneity throughout the record. For Jensen, ‘the character of the Greek Goddess Artemis reveals the energy and the broad musical horizons that our band brings on stage’. This is where the success of the record, focused on natural unification, shines. This vast album, comprised mainly of original compositions also features eclectic covers of The Fool On The Hill by the Beatles, Cry Buttercup, Cry, popularised by Maxine Sullivan, The Sidewinder by Lee Morgan and If It’s Magic by Stevie Wonder. Expert in her field, Renee Rosnes’ musical arrangements capture and cement the artistic creativity of each member. This super group, entirely female in its line-up, sends a strong message to the male dominated jazz world. Artemis’ music is beautiful, intelligent, and challenges the preconceived ideas of the jazz genre. ©️ Marc Zisman/Qobuz

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Jazz in het magazine