Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...


Lynn Cassiers Imaginary Band: Imaginary Band

Glenn Astarita By

Sign in to view read count
Belgian vocalist, experimentalist Lynn Cassiers' debut album with this band is largely unclassifiable. So, we take the easy way out and state that it heavily leans towards the avant-garde spectrum, although these loose, semi-structured works are embedded with jazz, free improv, and the leader's silky vocals, intermittently treated with electronics. No doubt, the music parallels the inferences of the album moniker.

Moody, otherworldly and gently magnetic may loom as accurate descriptors. The program includes alien dialogues, oddball maneuvers and captivating electronics—used in good taste and not overbaked. But Cassiers is also like a traffic cop here, as the musicians buoyantly follow her vocals and low-key accents with underlying themes and atmospherics, other than saxophonist Sylvain Débaisieux's fierce and brawny solos. But the septet has room to move via supple buildups, complemented by the leader's poetic swagger and a few spoken word instances.

"Gugu" is an airy jaunt amid pianist Erik Vermeulen's sprinkling notes and drummer Marek Patrman's textural cymbals work. However, each piece stands on its own.

"Namekian Color" is patterned with Cassiers' unearthly chants and oscillating electronics effects, offset by Niels Van Hertum's euphonium lines atop odd-metered beats and a few choruses that convey mayhem. At times the ensemble embarks on gradual descents into minimalistic vistas and introspective passages along with the soloists free-form outbreaks.

Moving forward, "We Talk" is built with a dream-weaving blues gait and quietly haunting motifs, countered by blossoming progressions. Although the following track, "7 Ways of a Hermit," starts as a temperate piano and vocal vamp, followed by bass and drums and the saxophonist's tense dialogues. Imagery of reaching an impasse in life surfaces, akin to "Shelf," where the musicians morph another perplexing ballad with a menacing background.

Cassiers' vivid imagination yields bountiful residuals on this persuasive set. Among other aspects, it's a calming album, but not sedate or blissful. And that is one of the more thought-provoking elements of these compelling abstracts, thriving with off-kilter sound designs that traverse a buoyant pathway to some previously undetected terminus.

Track Listing: 71%; Water Falls; Korrels; Busy Chick; Gugu; Namekian Color; Kapitein Antonio & Toutes les Gares; Frillin (the cartoon madness); We Talk; 7 Ways of a Hermit; A Full 6%; Shelf.

Personnel: Lynn Cassiers: voice, electronics; Ananta Roosens: violin; Sylvain Débaisieux: soprano and tenor saxophone; Niels van Heertum: euphonium; Erik Vermeulen: piano; Manolo Cabras: double bass; Marek Patrman: drums.

Title: Imaginary Band | Year Released: 2018 | Record Label: Clean Feed Records



comments powered by Disqus

Upcoming Shows

Date Detail Price
Lynn Cassiers Imaginary Band + De Beren Gieren
Strasbourg, France


Start your shopping here and you'll support All About Jazz in the process. Learn how.

Related Articles

Read Runner in the Rain Album Reviews
Runner in the Rain
By Jack Bowers
January 22, 2019
Read Driftglass Album Reviews
By Chris May
January 22, 2019
Read Pure Magic Album Reviews
Pure Magic
By Mark Sullivan
January 22, 2019
Read Vera Album Reviews
By Jerome Wilson
January 22, 2019
Read Kresten Osgood Quintet Plays Jazz Album Reviews
Kresten Osgood Quintet Plays Jazz
By Dan McClenaghan
January 21, 2019
Read The Poetry of Jazz Volume Two Album Reviews
The Poetry of Jazz Volume Two
By Victor L. Schermer
January 21, 2019
Read Mesophase Album Reviews
By Glenn Astarita
January 21, 2019