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Tamuz Nissim & George Nazos: Liquid Melodies

Dan Bilawsky By

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This meaningful title perfectly encapsulates the combined sonics of Israeli vocalist Tamuz Nissim and Greek guitarist George Nazos. When these two pair up they manage to develop a hydrous happening full of mellifluous designs, clear flowing thoughts, and dulcet tones. They're fluid in action, fluent in various dialects of the jazz language, and full of interesting ideas. In short, they deliver a solid performance through Liquid Melodies.

The music that Nissim and Nazos create together is difficult to pin down. On one track they might be frolicking over a groove in seven, as drummer Ronen Itzik brings the pitter-patter of gentle rain to bear on his ride cymbal ("Rainbows"); on the next, Nissim may be aligning herself with trombonist Willie Applewhite in a show of bebop solidarity, launching into a vocalese take on a Charlie Parker classic that's made complete with some scatting and solo trading ("Chasing The Bird"); and on the one after that, the co-leaders and the rest of the band may quietly conjure thoughts of a noir-ish fever dream ("Liquid Melodies"). Bottom line: Nissim and Nazos are expansive in their outlook, unwilling to commit to a single line of thinking or a unidirectional course.

As the album plays out, a marked shift in background and foreground roles, in addition to the aforementioned stylistic shifts, helps to keep the spice of life—variety, of course—in play. There are modernistic wonders that capitalize on beautiful blend and balance ("Isn't That Strange," "Piroulita"), a Gershwin gem that opens on a pas de deux for Nissim and bassist Danny Weller before hitting its stride with the band ("Fascinating Rhythm"), an intimate stroll through an isolated locale that gives Applewhite a chance to spread some mute-enhanced magic ("Lonely City"), and a goodbye song for the leaders that leaves their collective sound in the ears as the album ends ("Street Of Stars"). These harmonious offerings, among others, serve as explorations of the heart, the spirit, and the soul. They paint a beautifully clear and emotionally deep picture of what Tamuz Nissim and George Nazos are all about.

Track Listing: Rainbows; Chasing the Bird; Liquid Melodies; Isn’t That Strange; Fascinating Rhythm; Lonely City; Make Believe; Sleepless Night; Piroulita; On a Clear Day; Street of Stars.

Personnel: Tamuz Nissin: vocals; George Nazos: guitar; Willie Applewhite: trombone; Danny Weller: bass; Ronen Itzik: drums.

Title: Liquid Melodies | Year Released: 2017 | Record Label: Self Produced


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