AKJazz 2014


I have never heard of Assaf Kehati before. And it clearly is a shame, as this is his third release. And I must say that with this album I have just discovered a great new talent for myself. Naked, comprising five original compositions by Kehati and three standard tunes: Long Ago (and Far Away) by Jerome Kern, Someday My Prince Will Come and Ornette Coleman's When Will the Blues Leave mix very well. I hope one day he will be able to gather enough strong material not to include standards.

This, however, may not be an easy task, because Assaf Kehati plays slow, deep and sometimes even meditative music. A very emotional kind of jazz to that. You should listen very carefully and then the music unfolds like a sullen river and takes you to the unknown but beautiful world.

The opening Song for Saba is a valid statement of what this trio is about. When you listen to their music you get the feeling that you know it very well. It's because of the great sense of tradition in these sounds. You sometimes might even hear hints to  to the old classics like Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Seen or Moon River. And even if they are not there, if it is just subliminal, it does not really matter. What I am aiming at, is this deep sense of traditon, or ,even better, of traditions, that makes this music familiar to lots of people everywhere.

Understanding and sympathetic rhythm section consisting of Ehud Ettun on bass and Ronen Itzik on drums help make the guitarist's efforts more convincing. Delicate power. Sheer beauty. Slow Jazz at its best. 







Jorg Schippa's UnbedingT

Zirkus Bizarr

Unit Records (2014)

UTR 4477


After about four years Jorg Schippa's UnbedingT are back in town with a new release titled Zirkus Bizarr. They seem to suggest that this time their main interest is in penetrating the idiom of music made for and played in circus. Not exactly so. Basically it's the same good old chamber jazz as the last time around. Yet now it has many additional flavors, one of them being the long European circus tradition.

But if you listen more closely, you may hear some other influences, as varied as occasional gypsy/klezmer sounds, but also the old Berlin cabaret tradition, a bit of Kurt Weill, different modern classical references and lots of chamber jazz playing as well. Impeccable musicianship from the same line-up as before: the leader Schippa on acoustic guitar, Florian Bergmann on bass clarinet, Jurgen Kupke on clarinet and vocals and Christian Marien on drums.

And you can often hear bass here and there, despite the fact that they do not have a bass player. Good music. Brave and strong. Intricate but raw. Still, elegant. How strange!












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