Home » Jazz Articles » Album Review » Susanne Abbuehl: April

158

Susanne Abbuehl: April

By

Sign in to view read count
Susanne Abbuehl: April
The music on Susanne Abbuehl's recent ECM release April draws on diverse musical sources that result in a product that extends beyond that which is usually expected from a recording labeled as jazz. The music of Abbuehl and her fellow musicians at times resembles music more closely akin to an impression of the spare and angular sounds of early 20th century German Expressionism, or modern avant-garde music. Overall, there is a delightfully haunting cool edge to the music on April which should beckon the listener thirsty for inventive music conveying a somewhat reflective and melancholy mood.

The music on April is definitely a "thinking person's" music. Part of the cerebral appeal of the CD perhaps lies in the strong literary connections of the music. Five of the recording's eleven songs are based on poetry of e .e. cummings. Likewise, Abbuehl's original lyrics set with the music of Carla Bley or Wolfert Brederode also have strong poetic viability. Emotional content of the musical presentations on this CD are also notable. For example, Abbuehl's performance of the bebop anthem "Round Midnight" is an incredibly profound interpretation that most strikingly evokes the emotion of the melody and lyrics of Monk's classic masterpiece.

While Abbuehl's singing demonstrates a familiarity with stylizing a song in a jazz mode, her approaches to wordless vocalizing and the drumming of Samuel Rohrer also reveal influences of Middle Eastern and Indian music. The improvisations and accompaniment style of pianist Wolfert Brederode and clarinetist Christof May belie a more than casual familiarity to music in the jazz tradition. From a technical standpoint, the quality of the recording is first rate especially in terms of conveying the purity of Abbuehl's voice and clarity of her diction.

Jazz has always been an amalgam of different kinds of music, and it is a music that has had its share of artists who expose listeners to inventive new ideas of the potentialities of jazz. Susanne Abbuehl certainly continues this tradition. The hauntingly spare and inventive sounds of April should be a welcome addition to any jazz aficionado's CD collection.

Track Listing

Yes Is A Pleasant Country, Ida Lupino, Closer, All I Need, A.I.R.(All India Radio), Seven Somewhere I Have Never Traveled Gladly Beyond, Skies May Be Blue; Yes, 'Round Midnight, Maggie And Milly And Molly And May, Since Feeling Is First, Mane Na.

Personnel

Album information

Title: April | Year Released: 2002 | Record Label: ECM Records


< Previous
1944-45 Broadcasts

Next >
Bartok's Room

Comments

Tags


For the Love of Jazz
Get the Jazz Near You newsletter All About Jazz has been a pillar of jazz since 1995, championing it as an art form and, more importantly, supporting the musicians who create it. Our enduring commitment has made "AAJ" one of the most culturally important websites of its kind, read by hundreds of thousands of fans, musicians and industry figures every month.

You Can Help
To expand our coverage even further and develop new means to foster jazz discovery and connectivity we need your help. You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky ads plus provide access to future articles for a full year. This winning combination will vastly improve your AAJ experience and allow us to vigorously build on the pioneering work we first started in 1995. So enjoy an ad-free AAJ experience and help us remain a positive beacon for jazz by making a donation today.

More

Journey to Where
Trish Clowes & Ross Stanley
Torque
Tourismo
Influences
Jared Hall

Popular

For Real!
Hampton Hawes
My Prophet
Oded Tzur
Nimble Digits
Geoff Stradling
Time Again
Koppel, Blade, Koppel

Get more of a good thing!

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories, our special offers, and upcoming jazz events near you.