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Jazz Articles about Satoko Fujii

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Album Review

Kaze: Unwritten

Read "Unwritten" reviewed by Doug Collette


Improvised music is an acquired taste, to be sure. But for those who dote on the spontaneous, the liberating sensation that arises from interplay in the moment is nothing less than addictive. In that regard, then, Kaze's fittingly titled Unwritten, a wholly spontaneous piece of work, holds a bounty of fascination. Presenting a formidable challenge to listeners at the very outset of the record, this foursome proffers an initial track, “Thirteen Years," that is just shy of thirty-seven ...

7
Album Review

Satoko Fujii Tokyo Trio: Jet Black

Read "Jet Black" reviewed by Glenn Astarita


Satoko Fuji, a visionary pianist and composer hailing from Japan, has carved a distinct niche for herself in the world of modern jazz. Her unique style and innovative approach to music have garnered acclaim from critics and audiences alike. On her second outing with the Tokyo Trio, comprising herself on piano, Takashi Suguwa on bass, and Ittetsu Takemura on drums, Jet Black shines as a mesmeric and thought-provoking endeavor that explores the depths of human emotion and musical expression.

5
Album Review

Satoko Fujii Tokyo Trio: Jet Black

Read "Jet Black" reviewed by Doug Collette


Of all the varied settings in which Satoko Fujii places herself, the piano trio may be the most satisfying, if only because of the distinct way she and her respective bandmates stretch the boundaries of this ever-so-venerable instrumental concept. Hardly an exception to the rule of wholly arresting collaborative musicianship, Jet Black is the third outing of a lineup Fujii has dubbed the Tokyo Trio. Also including bassist Takashi Sugawa and drummer Ittetsu Takemura, this unit redefines one ...

11
Album Review

Satoko Fujii Tokyo Trio: Jet Black

Read "Jet Black" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan


The January 2024 release of Jet Black starts the year out right. It is the Satoko Fujii Tokyo Trio's sophomore recording, presenting the Japanese pianist in one of her most compelling modes of expression: the piano trio. This is not foreign territory for her. She headed up a superb threesome with drummer Jim Black and bassist Mark Dresser from 1997 until 2009, crafting gems like Illusion Suite (Libra Records, 2004) and Trace A River (Libra Records, 2008). As in any ...

7
Album Review

Satoko Fujii: Hibiki

Read "Hibiki" reviewed by Doug Collette


Expanding upon the Futari duo concept of pianist/composer Satoko Fujii and vibraphonist Taiko Saito, as depicted on Underground (Libra Records, 2021) and Beyond (Libra Records, 2021), Trio SAN incorporates drummer/composer Yuko Oshima, the album of whose, Hibiki, is a proportionately intense companion piece to the aforementioned pair of releases. As if simultaneously beckoning the audience at Kesselhaus, Berlin in June of 2022 as well as invoking their muse as a new collaboration, Trio San begins Hibiki with its ...

Album Review

Satoko Fujii: Hyaku: One Hundred Dreams

Read "Hyaku: One Hundred Dreams" reviewed by Alberto Bazzurro


Inciso al DiMenna Center di New York nel settembre 2022, questo album è forse il migliore, il più importante e ambizioso, realizzato dalla pianista giapponese in tempi recenti (e sappiamo quanto corposa sia la sua produzione da un po' di anni in qua). Basta, da subito, scorrere i nomi coinvolti nel progetto (in special modo il “grande vecchio" Wadada Leo Smith) per rendersene conto. La musica, poi, ci toglie da ogni dubbio o imbarazzo: siamo di fronte a un lavoro ...

7
Album Review

Trio San: Hibiki

Read "Hibiki" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan


Put a vibraphone into a small ensemble, listen in and the label “exotica" might come up--that exotic music pioneered by Martin Denny and Juan Garcia Esquivel. The pairing of pianist Satoko Fujii and vibraphonist Taiko Saito--a duo they call Futari--on their two terrific albums, Beyond (2021) and Underground (2022), both on Libra Records, sounded like exotica from the Twilight Zone. There is something about the glowing murk of vibes combined with the out-of-this-world sounds of Fujii's prepared piano ruminations that ...


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