Jani Moder's Brain Blender plays what can only be described as "classic fusion." Bandleader/guitarist Moder attended the prestigious Berlkee College of Music. Presumably his bandmates do not possess the same international credentials, but only the dual Slovenian/English credits on the CD case would give that away. It is truly international music, with a sound and technical skill that could be found anywhere. His third album features a basic quartet augmented with a percussionist and guest horn players.
The group charges in on the opening "Horizon T," with Moder's distorted guitar in the lead. Guest percussionist Vid Ušeničnik makes an important contributionas he does on seven of the ten tracksdespite taking no solos. His mallet playing significantly colors the sound of the album. "Fixation" begins with a more atmospheric approach, but soon locks into a groove, demonstrating how effective the basic quartet can be. The martial drumming that announces "Venus Radius" shows yet another side.
Moder reserves his first guest horn player for the title track, which marks the appearance of saxophonist Cene Resnik. The other guest soloiststrumpeter Igor Matković and saxophonist Lenart Krečičalso make a strong impression on their featured tracks. A very well-paced program overall.
Moder's compositions are striking and memorable, and his band delivers them with verve.
I've always loved jazz ...my mother was a classical pianist and my aunt was a blues singer, who was managed by Clarence Williams (Bessie Smith's producer). As a young boy, they introduced me to people like Louis Armstrong, Sarah Vaughan, and Jimmy Smith
I've always loved jazz ...my mother was a classical pianist and my aunt was a blues singer, who was managed by Clarence Williams (Bessie Smith's producer). As a young boy, they introduced me to people like Louis Armstrong, Sarah Vaughan, and Jimmy Smith. We hung out at my Aunt Kate's Soul Food restaurant in Harlem after the matinees at the Apollo where I listened to their stories. I knew I wanted to be a jazz musician from then on. My mother wanted me to play piano, but my Aunt bought me a guitar. I've been playing ever since.
At my mother's early prompting, I first sang Blue Velvet at my Catholic elementary school...and all the nuns came running in and asked me to sing again, so I knew I must have sounded pretty good. I've been singing ever since.
I met Tony Bennett in Miami and he inspired me to return to New York. He was a great mentor.
The best show I ever attended is mpossible to say, I've seen so many great shows. From Tony Bennett to Pat Martino, Return to Forever to Weather Report...I've seen some great performances.
My advice to new listeners is don't let jazz intimidate you, the music has something for every listener and it is our American gift to the world.