Release Date: 09/10/13
This album is a melting pot of our musical ideas, an intriguing journey through our personal stories. We recorded it over a few intense days, it was an overwhelming experience with one of the best bands that I've ever played with. Pianist Jasper van't Hof loves to remember the studio time he shared with saxophonist Harry Sokal, bassist Stefan Neldner and drummer Fredy Studer and is very excited about the sessions which have given birth to his latest album 'oeuvre'. It was created over a few months at the Maarwegstudio2 in Cologne when he met with his colleagues, some of the aces of the contemporary European jazz scene. Every note is a testimony to the incredible sounds of the musicians that took part which were described as an absolute dream line-up! 'Oeuvre' represents a perfectly matched meeting of like-minds, its contemporary jazz at its best. In the opening title track van't Hof, Sokal, Neldner and Studer vie with each other as equals responding with intuitive understanding, the hauntingly lyrical saxophone melody is contrasted against clustered piano chords. The subsequent track 'Likewise' inspires us with its intricate rhythms and parallel running lines of sax and electric bass. In the post-bop piece 'The Apollonians' van't Hof and Sokal make breaks with wild abandonment and freedom, seemingly atonal improvisations leap out from a well studied composition. The following 'Dulcinea.' is quite different, a balladesque peice whose name is evoked from a female character from Cervantes' 'Don Quixote' and lets the musicians show us their sensitive quiet sides. In 'Mr. Sowieso,' the quartet changes tempo. This infernal swinging number brings us almost to tears with its ever pressing, driving, unstoppable walking bass lines. We are given a chance to breathe again with 'Yes But' and its contemplative atmosphere. This is the ideal track for those late night hours. Finally we are offered two tracks in which bassist Stefan Neldner displays his virtuosic string art. Whereas in 'Elusive' his nimble fingers sprint across the fretboard, in 'Nebula' he opens our hearts with his warm, singing lilts on fretless bass. After some 70 albums Jasper van't Hof offers us in 'oeuvre' an accumulated wealth of experience from his career. For four and a half decades the man from Enschede has been prominent on the European jazz stage. In the 1970s he was one of the first jazz pianists, to move closer to rock using early electric pianos and synthesizers. Since 1984, the keyboardist has embraced and shown a love of African music with Pili Pili. In addition to collaborations with colleagues like Charlie Mariano, Angélique Kidjo, Wolfgang Dauner, Jean-Luc Ponty and Archie Shepp, the Dutchman's catalogue includes several solo recordings on piano (eg, 'Face To Face', 'Axioma') and even church organ ('Un Incontro Illusorio').
|Label: Q-Rious Music|
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