Jan Bang, Reading the Air, Punkt ***1/2

''If we could count the falling stars as we have done before'': Jan Bang delivers his first vocals based solo album since the late-1990s. Co-produced by Erik Honoré who with Bang runs the live sampling/live remixing Punkt festival in Kristiansand …

Published: 22 Feb 2024. Updated: 2 months.

''If we could count the falling stars as we have done before'': Jan Bang delivers his first vocals based solo album since the late-1990s. Co-produced by Erik Honoré who with Bang runs the live sampling/live remixing Punkt festival in Kristiansand and who provides lyrics to the tunes of the composer, singer and producer, Bang. We liked poignant elegy 'Delia' among the best of what's here, a luminous transformation of a traditional song interpreted by Harry Belafonte (it's a song that goes even further back to the 1930s) included on 1954's Mark Twain and Other Folk Favorites. The ballad is sung on Reading the Air with Bang in duo with singer Benedikte Kløw Askedalen. And also a strong forté of the album, closer 'No Paradise Lost,' is appealing. Trigger alert for those of a sensitive disposition, it's not a jazz album really. But it is relatable to a serious non-purist jazz listenership (a rumbling purism being the San Andreas fault line of so many strictly jazz only fans). And given the calibre of the musicianship and the timbral electronica fascination in the production sonics plus the quality of Bang's vocals kept making us think to pop and chart stuff. You, guaranteed, craving more context, even delving back into the 1980s, will come to what Bang does tonally as a singer with your own jumping off points, which is healthy, verging even more into the realms of Sylvian-esque art pop than the Human League 'Together in Electric Dreams' universe.

Tags: reviews

French label Tetrakord to release the Tom Ollendorff-Fabrice Tarel Quartet album London Vibes: Suite For Freedom

It's a 29 March release for London Vibes: Suite For Freedom, the work of Ealing guitarist Tom Ollendorff and French pianist Fabrice Tarel - double bassist Christophe Lincontang and drummer Marc Michel completing the personnel. Ollendorff, last …

Published: 22 Feb 2024. Updated: 2 months.

Next post

It's a 29 March release for London Vibes: Suite For Freedom, the work of Ealing guitarist Tom Ollendorff and French pianist Fabrice Tarel - double bassist Christophe Lincontang and drummer Marc Michel completing the personnel.

Ollendorff, last heard live by marlbank at the Hawk's Well, Sligo town in May and interviewed prior to that gig, is touring la belle France in April. Michel, on Ollendorff's 5-star 2023 album Open House - ''très bien ensemble'' - released last year, was a matador presence who reminded us when heard at the Vortex in 2021 stylistically of Tingvall trio drummer Jürgen Spiegel.

Tarel, who composed the engrossing suite, is an alumnus of the Leeds College of Music where he studied with free-jazz Moog-and-beyond innovator Matthew Bourne. Tarel albums include 2021 Tetrakord trio affair, Flower in the Desert.

l-r: Tom Ollendorff, Fabrice Tarel. Photo: press