403

Moscow City Jazz Festival 2008

Frederick Bernas By

Sign in to view read count
City Jazz Festival
December 4-5, 2008
16 Tons
Moscow, Russia
Erik Truffaz
December 4
Swiss trumpeter Erik Truffaz, a moderately well-known figure on the international tour circuit, surely counts Russia as a favorite gigging destination. This concert, in a popular pub-cum-music-club called 16 Tons, saw him welcomed by a highly enthusiastic young crowd—a far cry from the standard demographic at most similar events in the UK. Despite lengthy delays in reaching the city after landing at the airport, Truffaz and his quartet played with similar vigor, whipping up euphoric grooves based on relatively simple melodic and harmonic ideas. His effective cross-section of jazz and popular music is the main source of his mainstream appeal, although the live show was nevertheless largely sans gimmicks save for the drummer's momentary dabbling with electronic randomness. Obvious references can be made to the late work of Miles Davis, so it's not particularly original, but the band was enjoyable to watch and Truffaz can certainly look forward to many happy returns to city and country.
The Bad Plus with Wendy Lewis
December 5

Music by Stravinsky, Ornette Coleman and the three band members was on the bill in a typically distinctive set from The Bad Plus. Two things let them down. First, the sound engineer: Ethan Iverson's piano was far too low for the instrumental tunes, meaning it struggled for leverage against drummer Dave King's trademark scampering rhythms and skittery beats. A bigger, balanced sound to match the players' personalities was needed. The band's inclusion of indie rock singer Wendy Lewis for recent tours and the upcoming album has raised many eyebrows, and justifiably so. Her presence, although it clearly dominated the sound check, did not lend matching gravity to the overall performance—with a limited vocal range and negligible on-stage charisma, it felt like she was getting in the way more often than not, distracting from the fine creative work of Iverson, King and bassist Reid Anderson. The group's desire to explore new territory is understandable—even after a series of highly acclaimed trio records—but one couldn't help thinking they might have made a better choice of vocalist.

Photo Credit
Elmira Kuznetsova

Shop

More Articles

Read Panama Jazz Festival 2017 Live Reviews Panama Jazz Festival 2017
by Mark Holston
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Foundation of Funk at Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom Live Reviews Foundation of Funk at Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom
by Geoff Anderson
Published: February 20, 2017
Read The Cookers at Nighttown Live Reviews The Cookers at Nighttown
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: February 16, 2017
Read Monty Alexander Trio at Longwood Gardens Live Reviews Monty Alexander Trio at Longwood Gardens
by Geno Thackara
Published: February 15, 2017
Read "Howard Riley and Keith Tippett at Pizza Express" Live Reviews Howard Riley and Keith Tippett at Pizza Express
by Duncan Heining
Published: March 25, 2016
Read "Del & Dawg at the Ryman Auditorium" Live Reviews Del & Dawg at the Ryman Auditorium
by William Levine
Published: July 9, 2016
Read "The Julian Lage Trio at Signal Kitchen" Live Reviews The Julian Lage Trio at Signal Kitchen
by Doug Collette
Published: May 16, 2016
Read "Tom Griesgraber and Bert Lams at Kennett Flash" Live Reviews Tom Griesgraber and Bert Lams at Kennett Flash
by Geno Thackara
Published: September 1, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: Jazz Near You | GET IT  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!