6

Johan Moir Ensemble: Chasing Shadows

Eyal Hareuveni By

Sign in to view read count
Johan Moir Ensemble: Chasing Shadows The five musicians of Swedish Johan Moir ensemble met at the Academy of Music and Drama of Göteborg. Moir is the bassist, the composer and the director of HearHere Records. His ensemble debut album features his partner, vocalist Casey Moir, who also plays with him in the group Svelia and the duo Mother Jack; saxophonist Malin Wättring, who released last year her highly impressive debut album with her quartet and octet (Glöd, Havtorn, 2015) and plays in saxophonist Anna Högberg Attack!; pianist Naoko Sakata, who leads her own trio and plays in Wättring groups, and drummer Carl-Johan Groth.

The ensemble experiments with the seminal sound of many ECM releases of European artists, especially Scandinavian ones, but avoids the lyrical, impressionistic tone of the ECM school. Moir melodic, well-crafted compositions embrace the vocals of Casey Moir and suggest nuanced, cinematic narratives. Casey Moir wordless acrobatics and urgent delivery intensify the dramatic elements of compositions as "Like a Film/One Year Of Waiting" and "Scaleo" and her delivery stresses its fragile emotional core. In these songs Wättring and Sakata color these compositions with clever, improvised ideas.

The most impressive pieces are the ballads. On the touching "Layers" Casey Moir sings in an untypical reserved voice, using it as an added color to the beautiful soprano sax solo of Wättring and Sakata abstraction of the melody. The song "Grief" begins as a ballad but adopts later another approach that opens the interplay to some intense improvisation. The last song, "Wings Of Gold/Emptiness" builds carefully its dramatic progression until the cathartic, emotional climax.

Highly recommended.

Track Listing: Like a Film/One Year Of Waiting; Scaleo; 31st Floor; Crashing; Layers; Grief; Majoren; Wings Of Gold/Emptiness.

Personnel: Malin Wättring: saxophones; Casey Moir: vocals; Naoko Sakata: piano; Johan Moir: double Bass; Carl-Johan Groth: drums.

Year Released: 2016 | Record Label: Hearhere Records


comments powered by Disqus

Shop

More Articles

Read This Is Beautiful Because We Are Beautiful People CD/LP/Track Review This Is Beautiful Because We Are Beautiful People
by Matthew Aquiline
Published: May 29, 2017
Read Nigerian Spirit CD/LP/Track Review Nigerian Spirit
by James Nadal
Published: May 29, 2017
Read The Colours Suite CD/LP/Track Review The Colours Suite
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 29, 2017
Read Les Liasons Dangereuses 1960 CD/LP/Track Review Les Liasons Dangereuses 1960
by Mark Corroto
Published: May 29, 2017
Read Chapter Five CD/LP/Track Review Chapter Five
by Jack Bowers
Published: May 28, 2017
Read The Hive CD/LP/Track Review The Hive
by Edward Blanco
Published: May 28, 2017
Read "Heavy Dance" CD/LP/Track Review Heavy Dance
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: March 14, 2017
Read "Then and Now" CD/LP/Track Review Then and Now
by Duncan Heining
Published: May 2, 2017
Read "Cantos Invisíveis" CD/LP/Track Review Cantos Invisíveis
by Troy Collins
Published: November 18, 2016
Read "Amiira" CD/LP/Track Review Amiira
by John Eyles
Published: June 23, 2016
Read "El Viaje" CD/LP/Track Review El Viaje
by James Nadal
Published: September 14, 2016
Read "Mist. Moss. Home." CD/LP/Track Review Mist. Moss. Home.
by Jim Olin
Published: April 10, 2017

Why wait?

Support All About Jazz and we'll deliver exclusive content, hide ads, hide slide-outs, and provide read access to our future articles.

Buy it!