When noise or other unpleasant sounds are superimposed with ‘white
noise’, the human ear perceives them as less loud and disturbing. This
healing principle from psychoacoustics can be wonderfully transferred to
music - as bassist Martin Wind impressively proves. Wind is one of the German
figureheads in the New York jazz scene.
For his album "White Noise" he has brought two "jazz icons of the highest order"
into the studio. Philip Catherine hailing from Belgium, for many critics - next to John
McLaughlin - is the most respected jazz guitarist in Europe. The second is the
Dutchman Ack van Rooyen, whose warm, soft tone on trumpet and flugelhorn are his
"In a world where silence is becoming more and more of a luxury, I wanted to set a small acoustic antipole. A kind of
sound oasis where the audience can lean back and let the music have its effect undisturbed,"
Wind explains the concept of the album - the quietest in his discography so far.
But anyone who fears that three jazz virtuosos might have gone too esoteric is, of
course, wrong. The trio merely adheres to a proven principle: that less is often more.
In addition to a long musical partnership, the three musicians are bound by a deep
friendship. "When I was 17, my teacher at the time pressed a cassette into my hand. It
was the album 'The Viking' by Philip and the Danish bassist Niels-Henning Ørsted
Pedersen. It was a sonic revelation that would stay with me for decades,"
Wind recalls. "When I had the opportunity to play with Philip for the first time
many years later, I felt it was a kind of reunion because his sound was so familiar to
me." The connection between Wind and van Rooyen came about in the
Bundesjazzorchester (BuJazzO), where they met as students and teachers. Earlier this
year, van Rooyen celebrated his 90th birthday. Catherine, too, is now 77 years old,
while Wind, in his early 50s, is the youngest member of the trio. "I had long wanted Ack,
with his incredibly relaxed feel, to play some of my melodies," explains Wind and adds,
looking at Catherine: "For me, both of them are among the greatest melodists that jazz
has produced. They manage to make their instruments sing. I wanted to emphasise
that," says Martin Wind. He succeeds most impressively on the title track "White Noise",
which he wrote for his playing companions.