Learn How

Help improve All About Jazz

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. For $20, we'll hide those pesky Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

419

Kairos 4tet: Kairos Moment

Chris May By

Sign in to view read count
Kairos 4tet: Kairos Moment A luminous debut album from four young London musicians which, unexpectedly, affirms the eternal verities of acoustic jazz. Supple rhythms, strong melodies, inventive harmonies, flowing improvisation...it's all here and it bucks the trend. Since the adoption of Acoustic Ladyland by the mainstream media round about the release of the band's album Last Chance Disco (Babel, 2005), Britain has seen a rash of high decibel punk/jazz outfits—a few of them, like Led Bib, offering invigorating antidotes to the bland and the staid, others only infantile style jockey attempts to catch the wave.



Kairos 4tet was formed in 2008 to play the compositions of saxophonist Adam Waldmann, whose guest credits include the outstanding electro-acoustic adventurers Polar Bear and pianist Gwilym Simcock. As his association with Polar Bear suggests, Waldmann has an enquiring mind and, as his association with Simcock equally suggests, he is comfortable with the tradition. Among his formative influences, Waldmann lists saxophonists Wayne Shorter and Julian Arguelles, and singers Joni Mitchell and Stevie Wonder. As might be hoped given these influences, Waldmann writes arresting, tuneful melodies, most of them sunny, others wistful.



Completing the band are bassist Jasper Hoiby, who leads his own fine trio Phronesis, and has worked with Polar Bear saxophonist Mark Lockheart, and drummers Rob Barron (best known for his work with singer Damon Albarn), and Jon Scott. Singer Emilia Martensson joins for one track. The album was recorded in October 2008, roughly eight months after the group got together.



Waldmann's writing falls into two broad categories. Moderately paced, dreamy ballads on which he plays tenor, and friskier workouts, often built on muscular, middle to low register bass and piano ostinatos, on which he plays soprano. Eight of the 11 tunes, including the three short "Kairos Moment" interludes and the Martensson feature "Unresolved," are at the dreamy end of the spectrum. Waldmann's tenor playing has a sumptuous quality which goes back beyond Shorter and Arguelles at least as far as Ben Webster. His soprano playing is harder to pin down, spry and bright and perky, and very much his own.



Greece, ancient and modern, seems to have played a part in the genesis of 4tet: the front cover shows Waldmann strolling away from the camera in what could be Athens or Thessaloniki, while kairos is an ancient Greek word meaning an opportune moment for action. Kairos Moment, vividly hued and imaginative, sits comfortably beside both references, and establishes Waldmann as a precociously talented composer and player whose progress promises to be rewarding to follow.


Track Listing: V.C.; Kairos Moment 1; Unresolved; Russell's Resurgence; Kairos Moment 2; Long Distance Lien; Prelude To Hymn For Her; Hymn For Her; Enough Is Enough (Hotpocket); The Hermit; Kairos Moment 3; Unresolved (Short Version).

Personnel: Adam Waldmann: saxophones; Rob Barron: piano; Jasper Hoiby: bass; Jon Scott: drums; Emilia Martensson: vocals (3, 12).

Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: Kairos Records | Style: Modern Jazz


Related Video

Shop

More Articles

Read #knowingishalfthebattle CD/LP/Track Review #knowingishalfthebattle
by Mark F. Turner
Published: January 23, 2017
Read Live In Brooklyn CD/LP/Track Review Live In Brooklyn
by Roger Farbey
Published: January 23, 2017
Read King Of Xhosa CD/LP/Track Review King Of Xhosa
by James Nadal
Published: January 23, 2017
Read Blooming Tall Phlox CD/LP/Track Review Blooming Tall Phlox
by Mark Sullivan
Published: January 23, 2017
Read Hear & Now CD/LP/Track Review Hear & Now
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: January 22, 2017
Read Known-Unknown CD/LP/Track Review Known-Unknown
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: January 22, 2017
Read "Binary" CD/LP/Track Review Binary
by Dave Wayne
Published: January 5, 2017
Read "Nine Thoughts For One Word" CD/LP/Track Review Nine Thoughts For One Word
by John Ephland
Published: October 1, 2016
Read "Shipwreck 4" CD/LP/Track Review Shipwreck 4
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 13, 2016
Read "Stop Time" CD/LP/Track Review Stop Time
by Karl Ackermann
Published: March 24, 2016
Read "Positive Changes" CD/LP/Track Review Positive Changes
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: April 29, 2016
Read "Expanding Heart" CD/LP/Track Review Expanding Heart
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: October 21, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Get Jazz Near You via email!

Enjoy the convenience of receiving a comprehensive listing of jazz events in your area every Thursday. It's free!