A continual selection for guitarist deserving wider recognition, Slovenian Samo Salamon releases a live recording with his core trio of Italian drummer Roberto Dani and tubaist/bassist Michel Godard.
Salamon posted notice of his talent with Mamasaal (Dometra, 2009), with saxophonist Mark Turner, Government Cheese (FSNT, 2007), with saxophonist David Binney, Kei's Secret (Splasc(H), 2006), with drummer Tyshawn Sorey, and Two Hours (FSNT, 2006), with saxophonist Tony Malaby. While these various sessions were delightful, his releases with the working group heard here truly display his unique creative spark.
Live! follows this trio's Fall Memories (Splasc(H), 2007), with accordionist Luciano Biondini and Nano (Zalozba Goga, 2007), with saxophonist Julian Arguelles.
A classically trained guitarist, Salamon comes to jazz with an ear for European music and rock. His jazz/rock influences developed under the expert tutelage of John Scofield. That can be heard on "Miss Sarcasm," an aggressively assaultive piece with Dani's drums and the echo-effected guitar of Salamon creating a stadium sound.
But this record is not about rock's heaviness, it is more chamber jazz and sly creative music making. The key is the unique lineup of tuba and percussion as accents to the guitar. Godard's tuba bass lines quiet the music and eschew a traditional jazz swingnot that he doesn't conjure a New Orleans second line on "Catch the Train" or push the guitarist on the opener "Hebe," where Salamon dances around the tuba's urgency, while Dani works the metal edges of his kit. Godard plays tuba on half the tracks, but when he picks up his bass, a more traditional guitar trio emerges. Although with these three, the music doesn't rehash standard clichéé. Salamon's writing, like that of Bill Frisell, finds jazz in folk music, European chamber music, and in the tiniest gesture.
A very special recording.
Personnel: Samo Salamon: guitar; Michel Godard: tuba, electric bass; Roberto Dani: drums.