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Benjamin Moussay - Promontoire

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Promontoire

Benjamin Moussay

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If Benjamin Moussay’s name ever appeared on any ECM album covers it was always as sideman for Louis Sclavis, on his albums Sources, Silk and Salt on Melodies and Characters on a Wall. But with Promontoire, the 47-year-old has finally released an album for Manfred Eicher’s label that is entirely original solo material. Based in Munich, ECM Records already boasts an impressive number of major solo piano works, including the best-seller Köln Concert by Keith Jarrett, and Promontoire is now one of them. Moussay is a rather unassuming musician on the contemporary jazz scene, but those in the business have always recognised the clarity and strength of his playing. This includes Martial Solal, who said “He plays fair. Not too much, not too little”, but also an enormous list of musicians who have worked with him, including Sclavis, Archie Shepp, Dave Liebmann, Jean François Jenny Clark, Marc Ducret, Daniel Humair, Steve Swallow, Vincent Courtois, Michel Portal, Vincent Peirani, Youn Sun Nah, Airelle Besson and a few dozen others. He often plays in a trio (mainly with Eric Echampard and Arnault Cuisinier) but the solo piano pieces he performs here are timeless, characterised by simplicity, profound lyricism and improvisations with a strong narrative. Sensuality of the string’s vibration illuminating silence. Dance in its essence, solitary, unfolds with the flow of the internal rhythm. Elasticity of time, freedom of action, space, fleeting pleasure…Writing, infinitely reshuffling pretexts to the discretion of the instant. (…) Playing solo piano, I know the starting point and the destination. Mystery lies in the surprises of the journey”. This vision is a theme that flows throughout the twelve tracks on this album, which reveals a little more of itself with every listen. You can hear influences from all of his favourite musicians, from Thelonious Monk and Claudio Arrau to Lennie Tristano and Paul Bley, appearing and then disappearing before the melody takes over once again. Moussay always generates strong imagery with his melodies as he also composes music for film and theatre, but his work never sounds like music that has been churned out quickly without much thought or meaning behind it. Promontoire is particularly impressive during the more simplistic sequences (Villefranque and Monte Perdido), where Benjamin Moussay seems to say it all in just a few notes. This album proves that Less is more, yet again… © Marc Zisman/Qobuz

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Promontoire

Benjamin Moussay

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1
127
00:03:40

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Manfred Eicher, Producer - Benjamin Moussay, Composer, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2020 ECM Records GmbH, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

2
Promontoire
00:03:33

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Manfred Eicher, Producer - Benjamin Moussay, Composer, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2020 ECM Records GmbH, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

3
Horses
00:03:37

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Manfred Eicher, Producer - Benjamin Moussay, Composer, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2020 ECM Records GmbH, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

4
Don't Look Down
00:01:34

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Manfred Eicher, Producer - Benjamin Moussay, Composer, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2020 ECM Records GmbH, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

5
Villefranque
00:03:57

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Manfred Eicher, Producer - Benjamin Moussay, Composer, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2020 ECM Records GmbH, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

6
L'oiseau d'or
00:02:45

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Manfred Eicher, Producer - Benjamin Moussay, Composer, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2020 ECM Records GmbH, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

7
Chasseur de plumes
00:01:46

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Manfred Eicher, Producer - Benjamin Moussay, Composer, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2020 ECM Records GmbH, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

8
Sotto Voce
00:01:59

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Manfred Eicher, Producer - Benjamin Moussay, Composer, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2020 ECM Records GmbH, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

9
The Fallen
00:04:18

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Manfred Eicher, Producer - Benjamin Moussay, Composer, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2020 ECM Records GmbH, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

10
Theme From Nana
00:03:54

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Manfred Eicher, Producer - Benjamin Moussay, Composer, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2020 ECM Records GmbH, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

11
Monte Perdido
00:04:02

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Manfred Eicher, Producer - Benjamin Moussay, Composer, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2020 ECM Records GmbH, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

12
Théa
00:04:07

Gerard De Haro, Mixer, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Manfred Eicher, Producer - Benjamin Moussay, Composer, Piano, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Nicolas Baillard, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2020 ECM Records GmbH, under exclusive license to Deutsche Grammophon GmbH, Berlin

Album Description

If Benjamin Moussay’s name ever appeared on any ECM album covers it was always as sideman for Louis Sclavis, on his albums Sources, Silk and Salt on Melodies and Characters on a Wall. But with Promontoire, the 47-year-old has finally released an album for Manfred Eicher’s label that is entirely original solo material. Based in Munich, ECM Records already boasts an impressive number of major solo piano works, including the best-seller Köln Concert by Keith Jarrett, and Promontoire is now one of them. Moussay is a rather unassuming musician on the contemporary jazz scene, but those in the business have always recognised the clarity and strength of his playing. This includes Martial Solal, who said “He plays fair. Not too much, not too little”, but also an enormous list of musicians who have worked with him, including Sclavis, Archie Shepp, Dave Liebmann, Jean François Jenny Clark, Marc Ducret, Daniel Humair, Steve Swallow, Vincent Courtois, Michel Portal, Vincent Peirani, Youn Sun Nah, Airelle Besson and a few dozen others. He often plays in a trio (mainly with Eric Echampard and Arnault Cuisinier) but the solo piano pieces he performs here are timeless, characterised by simplicity, profound lyricism and improvisations with a strong narrative. Sensuality of the string’s vibration illuminating silence. Dance in its essence, solitary, unfolds with the flow of the internal rhythm. Elasticity of time, freedom of action, space, fleeting pleasure…Writing, infinitely reshuffling pretexts to the discretion of the instant. (…) Playing solo piano, I know the starting point and the destination. Mystery lies in the surprises of the journey”. This vision is a theme that flows throughout the twelve tracks on this album, which reveals a little more of itself with every listen. You can hear influences from all of his favourite musicians, from Thelonious Monk and Claudio Arrau to Lennie Tristano and Paul Bley, appearing and then disappearing before the melody takes over once again. Moussay always generates strong imagery with his melodies as he also composes music for film and theatre, but his work never sounds like music that has been churned out quickly without much thought or meaning behind it. Promontoire is particularly impressive during the more simplistic sequences (Villefranque and Monte Perdido), where Benjamin Moussay seems to say it all in just a few notes. This album proves that Less is more, yet again… © Marc Zisman/Qobuz

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