Johannes Berauer ft. Gwilym Simcock, Vienna Chamber Diaries Plus Strings, Basho ****

Out for release in March this is a record that we have been playing a lot in recent days and each listen delivers up new delights. Now four years since the last instalment of the Austrian composer Johannes Berauer's Vienna Chamber Diaries its appeal …

Published: 13 Feb 2022. Updated: 4 months.

Out for release in March this is a record that we have been playing a lot in recent days and each listen delivers up new delights. Now four years since the last instalment of the Austrian composer Johannes Berauer's Vienna Chamber Diaries its appeal continues to be aimed at classical fans as much as jazz appreciators and works on both levels. Certainly each of these groupings of listeners can get something from the release because there is some great writing here, a certain gravitas that draws you in to its own particular space, and for jazz listeners especially a looseness and feel that allows the ensemble to open up especially when among the instrumentalists reedist Klaus Gesing who plays a strong and compelling role is able to stretch out. Pianist Gwilym Simcock adds some beautiful touches at the heart of the harmonic engine room of the album and Austrian guitar star Wolfgang Muthspiel also adds some telling touches, the arrangement also making considered room for strings. The 'Divertimento' pieces are some of the highlights of the album as is the tender 'Florentin' although the writing is very strong and convincing throughout.

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'Cedar Tree' from upcoming Artie Zaitz and Mark Kavuma album Back to Back streams

Here's the warm and mellow lead-off track from March release Back to Back from the Grant Green influenced guitarist Artie Zaitz, also a wiz on Hammond organ which is his focus here, and trumpeter Mark Kavuma also here in less familiar guise on …

Published: 11 Feb 2022. Updated: 4 months.

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Here's the warm and mellow lead-off track from March release Back to Back from the Grant Green influenced guitarist Artie Zaitz, also a wiz on Hammond organ which is his focus here, and trumpeter Mark Kavuma also here in less familiar guise on Wurlitzer electric piano (hence ''back to back'' in the title) the pair joined by drummer William Cleasby. Back to Back is to be issued on Kavuma's Banger Factory label.

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