123

Plamen Karadonev: Crossing Lines

Jerry D'Souza By

Sign in to view read count
Plamen Karadonev: Crossing Lines Plamen Karadonev is a multifaceted artist who began playing accordion when he was five, in his native Bulgaria. At first he was interested in Bulgarian folk music, but expanded his horizons to play the piano, listen to jazz and meld it with his native folk music when he was in his teens. A scholarship to Berklee took him to the United States, where he began playing with several jazz musicians. The experience honed his skills as a pianist, evidence of which is rife on this recording.

Karadonev's compositions have appealing character. He takes folk forms and classical strains and weaves them seamlessly with jazz harmonies. He show this right off on the aptly named "Crossing Lines," a tune with several strands that dangle loosely at the outset. Karadonev and Hal Crook (trom-o-tizer) trade lines until the former gets down to an introspective reading of the theme. Karadonev then goes deeper into the grove, pulling out the melody and letting it ripple in the river of his notes. Drummer Lee Fish and bassist Kendall Eddy change the harmony to bop, and the music becomes filtered through this prism, with Karadonev showing a traipsing right hand and a firm left that stamps the chords. Having circumvented the theme in his initial explorations, Crook comes in to find the dangling cord. The lines that have crisscrossed now form a perfect circle.

"Like Sonny" is a solid piece of work, with tenor saxophonist George Grazone moving to the crux—bending the notes, letting tiny slivers fly loose, getting robust and brawny before he begins to swing. He has it all, a tensile player who brings edge and finesse to his role. Karadonev is energetic and melodic, and as is his wont, keeps it all pegged down with emphatic chord structures.

"Rondo a la Bulger" has a bright ambience. Karadonev lets the enticing melody billow before he pulls the beat in, and lets the nuances surface. Karadonev's focus never falters as he reinvents pulse and rhythm and draws unwavering attention in his approach to the piano, for which he gives plenty of cause throughout Crossing Lines.


Track Listing: Crossing Lines; Night and Day; Rondo a la Bulger; Like Sonny; Sianic; Frohleher Landman; Prelude in F; You Must Believe in Spring; The Island.

Personnel: George Garzone: tenor saxophone (4, 5); Hal Crook: trombone, trom-o-tizer (1, 6); Elena Koleva: voice (8, 9); Plamen Karadonev: piano, keyboards, accordion; Kendall Eddy: bass; Austin McMahon: drums; Lee Fish: drums (1, 6).

Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Mu Records


Shop

More Articles

Read Transparent Water CD/LP/Track Review Transparent Water
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 20, 2017
Read Billows Of Blue CD/LP/Track Review Billows Of Blue
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 20, 2017
Read Love Dance CD/LP/Track Review Love Dance
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 20, 2017
Read Honest Woman CD/LP/Track Review Honest Woman
by James Nadal
Published: February 20, 2017
Read June CD/LP/Track Review June
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 19, 2017
Read The Final Concert CD/LP/Track Review The Final Concert
by John Sharpe
Published: February 19, 2017
Read "Planet" CD/LP/Track Review Planet
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: September 28, 2016
Read "A Secret Sigh" CD/LP/Track Review A Secret Sigh
by Mark Sullivan
Published: November 21, 2016
Read "Sanguinaria (Hopeful Songs)" CD/LP/Track Review Sanguinaria (Hopeful Songs)
by Roger Farbey
Published: January 24, 2017
Read "How to Build a City" CD/LP/Track Review How to Build a City
by Jim Olin
Published: January 1, 2017
Read "Laughing At Life" CD/LP/Track Review Laughing At Life
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: January 27, 2017
Read "Rope" CD/LP/Track Review Rope
by Glenn Astarita
Published: April 6, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!