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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Francois Carrier: Freedom is Space for the Spirit

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Saxophonist Francois Carrier had quite a week in late May of 2014. It began when he and his long-time percussionist Michel Lambert played with bassist John Edwards and pianist Steve Beresford at the Vortex Jazz Club in London on May 25th and ended with the duo performing with acoustic bassist Rafal Mazur at the Alchemia Jazz Klub in Krakow, Poland on June 1st and then recording the following day. Sandwiched between London and Krakow was a trip to ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Francois Carrier: The Joy of Being

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Continuing their world travels, the team of reedman Francois Carrier and percussionist Michel Lambert again meet acoustic bassist Rafal Mazur, almost a year to the day from the recording of Unknowable at the Alchemia Jazz Klub in Krakow, Poland to create The Joy Of Being.Much of what can be said about “spontaneous" jazz in general or of how these players interact specifically can be found in the earlier review.What is particularly interesting in this meeting is ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Francois Carrier: OUTgoing

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In the realm of Western music, the role of the performer has been rather circumscribed. In Classical music, the composer is king and the range of “allowed" expression rather limited. For most of its history, jazz performers relied on tunes as the basis for their improvisations, and thus, the composer (or tunesmith) was still needed, with the best creating tunes having a memorable melodic arc or harmony, giving the player solid and recognizable support. Modern jazz ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

François Carrier: Unknowable

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The mystery of spontaneously created music is most certainly “unknowable," but saxophonist François Carrier has shown himself to be completely at home facing, and embracing, the unknown. Unknowable finds Carrier and his long-time percussionist Michel Lambert meeting acoustic bass guitarist Rafal Mazur at the Alchemia Jazz Klub on June 1, 2014 at the recommendation of Marek Winiarski, the owner of Not Two Records. The live, completely unrehearsed set went so well, and felt so intense and present that ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Francois Carrier/Michel Lambert: iO

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Listening to the nine improvised duets on saxophonist François Carrier and Michel Lambert's latest release iO, one gets the sense the creative process comes not from friction, but from friendship. The music isn't forged from a skirmish, like, say a Peter Brotzmann/Han Bennink record might be. It has more in common with Charles Lloyd's duo with Billy Higgins or maybe Lee Konitz duets with Elvin Jones.That's because their friendship began in 1998 and has been forged over multiple ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Francois Carrier / Michel Lambert / Alexey Lapin: The Russian Concerts Volume 1

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Back in 2011, this trio released an excellent trilogy of albums which documented a December 2010 tour of Russia by Canadian alto saxophonist Francois Carrier and his long-time drummer Michel Lambert during which they played with Russian pianist Alexey Lapin in Moscow and St. Petersburg. Now, The Russian Concerts Volume 1 again documents the three together in Moscow, but this is not a fourth record of the 2010 tour, instead being the first (of several, judging by its title) from ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

François Carrier/ Michel Lambert/ John Edwards/ Steve Beresford: Overground To The Vortex

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The adventures of François Carrier continue with Overground To The Vortex. The well-traveled Canadian saxophonist has recorded in Nepal--KATHMANDU (FMR, 2008), St. Petersburg, Russia with All Out (FMR, 2011) and In Motion (Leo, 2011), of course Canada Entrance 3 (Ayler, 2011), and this release in Great Britain, where he made his Shores and Ditches (FMR Records,2012).His improvisational voice lends itself to collaborating with others, as he is an astute listener and a master of teamwork. He has recorded ...

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Shoreditch, London, December 2011: One great gig, two fine albums

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In December 2011, French-Canadian alto saxophonist François Carrier was approaching the end of a six-month sabbatical visit to London, sponsored by Conseil des arts et des lettres Québec. On December 6, Carrier played a gig at The Vortex to launch his album Inner Spire (Leo, 2011) recorded the previous year in Russia with his long-time drummer Michel Lambert and Russian pianist Alexey Lapin; Lambert had flown into London for that launch gig. The next day, December 7, Carrier and Lambert ...

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Francois Carrier Trio Live in Russia

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Back in September, the review of Inner Spire (Leo, 2011) by the Québec duo of alto saxophonist Francois Carrier and drummer Michel Lambert with Russian pianist Alexey Lapin, closed with the words “This is an impressive debut from a fine trio. Let us hope a sequel follows soon." Shortly after that review appeared, news leaked out of not one but two sequels to Inner Spire, and now they are both released. While Inner Spire was recorded in Moscow ...


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