With their new formation, the three experienced artists, who are well established in Europe's jazz world, prove that the greatest quality in jazz is still the immediacy of the moment - without a net or a false bottom! Organic melodic and rhythmic structures, surprises and the willingness to follow the musical contribution of the other in every moment and to incorporate it into one's own shape - something like that does or doesn't work.
In this case, it is doing remarkably well! Perhaps because all three have tremendous improvisational and compositional experience; perhaps because all three describe themselves as "intuitive personalities"; perhaps because in this case the three participants showed great sympathy and empathy. (John Heitzmann)
“The music is based on the recording of a streaming concert that we gave as part of my three-day portrait at the Porgy & Bess Jazz & Music Club in Vienna at the beginning of January this year. It was a special and challenging situation due to the lockdown that was still in place at the time; and it was our first concert with this line-up! After the concert, all three of us felt that we had created something special, which was confirmed when we listened to the recordings.
On this evening, we quickly and intuitively engaged in a wide variety of musical moods and situations, developing a dynamic that sometimes goes far beyond that of a trio. In a way, one piece followed the other, with an internal musical logic and in the knowledge of what had been played so far, which is why the order on the CD remained the same.
As always, there is a history:
In 2020 I released my double CD “Möbius Strip”. On one CD, the Viennese bassist Gina Schwarz over dubbed solo recordings that I had made a few years earlier with my good friend Joachim Kühn in Ibiza. During these recordings, I was fascinated by her tasteful intuition, sound and wealth of ideas. Then we started to rehearse a little, just to see where that could lead to.
Ramón López I also know through Joachim. For many years he played in his African trio together with gembri player and singer Majid Bekkas. In 2010 we met backstage at the Berlin Jazz Fest, where I performed with the JBBG and our “Urban Folktales” program. Since then we have been in contact and talked about a possible collaboration.
Then the invitation came for my portrait and one thing followed the other. Perhaps I should honestly say that I was never really interested in the trio format per se! Too many great saxophonists, starting with Sonny Rollins, have said theirs in this context. But what made me curious was playing with these two fantastic musicians. It was important to me that all possible combinations are audible. Ramón alone, Gina alone, the respective duo constellations and of course the trio. Too often in jazz history, the bass and drums were only companions for the solo explorations of the wind instrument soloist. In our constellation this is not the case, which results in very exciting and varied moments.
In addition, for the first time I wanted to use all the instruments in the saxophone family. Each of these instruments has its very own character, which allows me to enormously expand our spectrum of timbres and emotions. Ramón also has a very percussive and colorful way of playing, in which he also uses the Indian tabla. I myself also dealt very intensively with South Indian music in the 1990s; this shared gaming experience naturally connects. Sometimes we play on three different rhythmic levels simultaneously, which is quite complex and really very exciting!
I suppose that the three of us just share a similar intuitive approach and a lot of musical experience. We never know where we're going, but we listen to each other very well. This for me results in a very harmonious and organically developed music. A great pleasure and gift for the three of us! "
Heinrich von Kalnein