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Svetlost: Jazz (to the working class)

Vitalijus Gailius BY

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Svetlost: Jazz (to the working class)
It seems that Macedonia might be fertile ground for developing a jazz/improvised music scene. One of the best Macedonian groups is the trio Svetlost. After its debut album was featured in Bandcamp's selection for best jazz records of 2019, the trio came to the attention of the international community. Originally, Svetlost was a trio, but the first album was recorded with the large ensemble and it sounds like a reincarnation of Scandinavia's Fire! Orchestra with a southeast European touch.

Jazz (To The Working Class) presents Svetlost once more as a trio. This time the group focuses more on ambient, noise and ritual music than on a standard jazz aesthetic. The recording was made in the studio of Skopje's radio station Kanal 103 using a vintage broadcast Soundcraft SAC200 mixer, and this contributes to the unique tone of the record. The album is divided into four parts but it seems as though you are listening to one extended composition. At the beginning it all sounds very krautrockish, rather like Faust or Can. But after a few minutes, delicate clarinet injects an oriental flavor. Compared to soprano saxophone, which is heard as well, the clarinet's chalmeau sound seems more appropriate to the album's soundscape.

Jazz employs a linear approach. There is no circularity. Musicians morph from one motif to another and do not revisit past moments. There is continuous experimentation with acoustic and electronic sounds. While percussionist Kristijan Novkovski plays gongs and uses various drums sticks and other percussion tricks, his colleague Deni Omeragic manipulates electronic sound pitches, waves and frequencies and even uses fragments from TV and radio news reports on one track. Ninoslav Spirovski is always around with his soprano saxophone and gentle clarinet.

On Jazz Svetlost takes listener on an intimate journey, one a step beyond the regular jazz approach. If you are looking for something unhurried, contemplative and distinctive, this album is for you.

Track Listing

We have the mandate! Bow down! You do not have free agency! You do not have free will! You can not refuse! Do not try to resist! Bow down!; Unite! Unite! The medium is the message. The life not lived.; To recognize yourself in the eyes of others'; Awake! Awake! Arrival is imminent.

Personnel

Ninoslav Spirovski: clarinet; Kristijan Novkovski: percussion; Deni Omeragic: bass.

Album information

Title: Jazz (to the working class) | Year Released: 2020 | Record Label: PMGJazz

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