All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

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...

6

Girls in Airports: Kaikoura

Jakob Baekgaard By

Sign in to view read count
Since releasing its self-titled debut in 2010, the Danish group Girls in Airports has managed to create their own expression, a unique blend of Nordic jazz lyricism, indie-rock influences and sounds from around the world, including the pentatonic scales of Ethiopian music, dub sounds of Jamaica and Brazilian rhythms. This is truly a globalized band if there ever was one.

The group's aesthetic foundation relies on the natural melodies of saxophonist and composer Martin Stender, but the music is developed organically in the group and each member delivers a crucial part of a greater whole. It isn't about egos delivering their own solos, but about artists fleshing out a wide canvas of sound.

If there is one thing that is apparent on the group's third album Kaikoura, it is an increasing interest in texture and coherence. While each composition is strong and melodic, there isn't a particular anthem that sticks out in the same way as the utterly enchanting "Children's Temple," the epic tour de force on the predecessor Migration. The narrative isn't so much inherent in the singular song as it is in the work as a whole. While being distinctive in its own right, one composition flows naturally into the other, carried by the delicate rhythms of percussionist Victor Dybbroe and drummer Mads Forsby.

The playing of Stender and fellow saxophonist Lars Greve is as inventive as ever, encompassing everything from the deep growls of the didgeridoo to the dancing lines of a snake charmer and the velvet tone of Lester Young. Their signature melodic arabesques come to the fore on "The Grass By The Roses" where their singing saxophones lift in a joyous crescendo.

A notably new influence comes from the post-rock pioneers Tortoise whose cinematic, repetitious grooves and subtle rhythmic counterpoints resurface on "Broken Stones" with Mathias Holm's ethereal analogue keyboard washes in the center.

Holm, who has humorously been called the captain in the band, is the pillar of the effortless organic shifts in sound. Through his diverse use of the keys, he can cover everything from dub imitations to oriental Fender Rhodes-funk and post-rock. However, the real captain in the band is the music itself and everyone in the band seems capable of taking it into new places.

Kaikoura is named after an island in New Zealand, but it belongs to the rich geography of the imagination. Like a wild forest, the music reflects life in all its colorful variety while still having a firm sense of unity. In spite of all the influences, this isn't a postmodern patchwork of genres, but rather a timeless snapshot of natural beauty.

Track Listing: Intro; The Grass by the Roses; Sunshine on Fish Skin; Broken Stones; Children's Chambers; Kaikoura; King's Birthday; Albert Kahn; Oktober Komposition.

Personnel: Martin Stender: saxophones; Lars Greve: saxophones and clarinets; Mathias Holm: keyboards; Victor Dybbroe: percussion; Mads Forsby: drums.

Title: Kaikoura | Year Released: 2013 | Record Label: Gateway Music

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Live

Live

Edition Records
2017

buy
Fables

Fables

Edition Records
2015

buy
Kaikoura

Kaikoura

Gateway Music
2013

buy
 

Migration

Mawi Music
2011

buy
 

St

Mawi Music
2010

buy
Girls in Airports

Girls in Airports

Self Produced
2010

buy

Related Articles

Read Paul Heller Meets Roman Schwaller CD/LP/Track Review
Paul Heller Meets Roman Schwaller
by Jack Bowers
Published: September 18, 2018
Read Change In The Air CD/LP/Track Review
Change In The Air
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: September 18, 2018
Read Vera CD/LP/Track Review
Vera
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: September 18, 2018
Read In Motion CD/LP/Track Review
In Motion
by Roger Farbey
Published: September 18, 2018
Read Marshian Time Slip CD/LP/Track Review
Marshian Time Slip
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: September 18, 2018
Read Four On The Road CD/LP/Track Review
Four On The Road
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: September 17, 2018
Read "Promise!" CD/LP/Track Review Promise!
by Don Phipps
Published: April 6, 2018
Read "While We Still Have Bodies" CD/LP/Track Review While We Still Have Bodies
by Tyran Grillo
Published: February 23, 2018
Read "The Sound Of The Earth" CD/LP/Track Review The Sound Of The Earth
by Mark Sullivan
Published: August 5, 2018
Read "The Unrecorded Fox" CD/LP/Track Review The Unrecorded Fox
by Jack Bowers
Published: July 3, 2018
Read "Best of the Bootlegs 2017" CD/LP/Track Review Best of the Bootlegs 2017
by Doug Collette
Published: February 24, 2018
Read "Somewhere Glimmer" CD/LP/Track Review Somewhere Glimmer
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 15, 2017