Whilst many 64-year-olds look forward to retirement, Switzerland-based Irish guitarist Christy Doran on the other hand has been kicking into creative overdrive. No.9 (Leo Records, 2013) was a beguiling duo date with Chinese pipa virtuoso Yang Jing, while Mesmerized (Double Moon records, 2013) saw Doran's long-running post-rock group New Bag rejuvenated by the exhilarating vocal presence of Sara Buechi. I don't think art should have borders or containment," Doran told All About Jazz in a 2013 interview, there's still a lot to be discovered, explored and evolved." A strong current of exploration and discovery marks Bunter Hund's debut, whose headwaters--stemming ...read more
Celebrated Swiss guitarist Christy Doran assets pertain to his indefatigable creative sparks, evidenced by his work in jazz-rock, avant-garde jazz improvisation or when tackling world music. And from a fundamental shedding perspective, he could hold his own with most if not all of the present guitar heroes. New Bag was created in 1997, but Swiss vocalist Sarah Buechi joined the ranks in 2012. Her presence is somewhat multifaceted as she harmonizes, scats, and often steers the melodies in unison with the soloists, where ultra-modern jazz-rock is shaded with avant deviations and alternating cadences. Hence, the musicians do not ...read more
Guitarist Christy Doran's New Bag has negotiated its share of rough waters during its sixteen-year journey. While the ship was severely rocked by the death of drummer Fabian Kuratli in 2008 and the departure of vocalist Bruno Amstad after 12 years in 2011, Doran has soldiered on. His compositions ultimately define New Bag's personality, rather than the individuals in it at a given time dominating. The dynamic Amstad was a hard act to follow, but on the band's eighth recording Doran has turned up a real gem in Sara Buechi, whose vocal improvisations run from ethereal to wild-cat howls, conjuring ...read more
Classically trained pipa virtuoso Yang Jing and Irish free-jazz/jazz-rock electric guitarist Christy Doran may seem unlikely collaborators, but closer inspection shows some common musical ground. Jing's background is Chinese classical but her spirit of adventure has drawn her to more experimental settings in duos with veteran percussionists Pierre Favre and long-term Anthony Braxton collaborator Gerry Hemingway, in a quartet with three classical guitarists and with East-West quartet Different Song and nonet First European Chinese Ensemble. Doran, too, has ventured beyond the confines of traditional jazz groups, setting Irish playwright/novelist/poet Samuel Beckett's words to music, exploring Indian music and performing solo. ...read more
The opening concert at the 14th Bray Jazz Festival in May, just half an hour outside Dublin in County Wicklow, was something of a homecoming gig for Irish guitarist Christy Doran and his quartet New Bag. Doran was born 63 years ago, just a few short miles down the road from Bray, in Greystones, though at the age of 10 his parents relocated to his mother's homeland of Switzerland, where Doran has lived and made music for the past half century.With drummer/percussionist Fredy Studer, saxophonist/flautist Urs Leimgruber and double bassist Bobby Burri, Doran created Swiss free-jazz history in ...read more
The international collaborative trio of American trombonist Ray Anderson, Dutch drummer Han Bennink and Irish guitarist Christy Doran recorded two adventurous albums for hatART in the mid-1990s; Azurety was released in 1994 and Cheer Up arrived the following year. ABD collects the strongest tracks from these two sessions onto one disc, providing a valuable opportunity to re-examine the creative spontaneity these three artists share.Though the compilation's ten selections are wildly eclectic--one of Doran's progressive numbers sits precariously alongside a nostalgic Duke Ellington cover while the remaining pieces are evenly split between Anderson's writing and free improvisation--its diversity offers ...read more
In the '90s, this trio ascended to the upper echelon of all things considered cutting-edge in the wide open world of jazz and improvisation. This reissue is a compilation featuring all of Azurety (hatART, 1994) and three tracks culled from Cheer Up (hatART, 1995). Other than his superior improvisational faculties, Irish guitarist Christy Doran could give most metal or jazz-fusion guitarists a run for their money. The album boasts a consortium of jazz-blues overtones; tenacious three-way dialogues; free-form subplots; surrealistic slants; and jaunts into vast solar systems. One of many highlights, March of the Hipsters," opens ...read more
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