Articles

Daily articles carefully curated by the All About Jazz staff. Read our popular and future articles.

ALBUM REVIEW

Taeko Kunishima: Iridescent Clouds

Read "Iridescent Clouds" reviewed by James Nadal

There is an atmospheric element which Japanese musicians inherently weave throughout their compositions, giving their music a singular dimension which is readily identifiable. Acknowledged for her trademark lyricism, pianist Taeko Kunishima reflects upon the wonders of nature on Iridescent Clouds, offering elegant improvised passages encased in a meditative concept. Accompanied again by Clive Bell, recognized master of the shakuhachi flute, and secured by the steady bass of Paul Moylan, the ensemble is augmented by percussionist Camilo Tirado. Additional ...

TAKE FIVE WITH...

Take Five With Taeko Kunishima

Read "Take Five With Taeko Kunishima" reviewed by Taeko Kunishima

Meet Taeko Kunishima: Taeko Kunishima started playing piano at seven. Particularly taken by Mozart and Beethoven, she later studied classical piano performance at university. On hearing Miles Davis for the first time, her direction changed, leading her to explore the music of many different jazz artists, and to develop her own improvisatory technique whilst studying jazz harmony.Since moving to England, she has continued to evolve and develop her startling, angular contemporary jazz approach, echoing Thelonious Monk ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Taeko Kunishima: Late Autumn

Read "Late Autumn" reviewed by Lewis J Whittington

Taeko Kunishima's Late Autumn starts with a wandering solo entrance that engages the composer/pianist's stream of jazz style. It instantly feels both musically liberated and firmly rooted in multi-era reverence. This prologue, “To the Hebrides," open an otherwise freewheeling narrative by Kunishima and her dazzling lineup.After the opening track the set ignites with the seven-minute scorcher, “Return To Life." Inside of its retro-progressive ascensions, shakuhachi virtuoso Clive Bell evokes a Japanese classicism which then vanishes, jarring the imagination. ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Taeko Kunishima: Late Autumn

Read "Late Autumn" reviewed by Lawrence Peryer

Pianist Taeko Kunishima's third record, Late Autumn, is an exciting work full of intriguing compositions, diverse instrumentation and top-notch performances. Any one or two of these attributes, as manifested on this album, would be enough to carry the day, but the presence of all three makes for a must-hear release. Kunishima's compositional skill is substantial, and it is a missed opportunity to listen to these pieces in only a casual way. The songs veer from moments of ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Taeko Kunishima: Red Dragonfly

Read "Red Dragonfly" reviewed by Nic Jones

Taeko Kunishima and her quartet have largely managed to avoid a lot of the well-covered ground in the modern mainstream area, and in so doing she's carved out an identity for herself both as a composer and a piano improviser--while the group, admirably suited to the subtle, implied demands of her music, has succeeded in carving out an identity distinctly its own.

Kunishima has utilised her Japanese heritage in her music, and the presence of Clive Bell on shakuhachi on ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Taeko Kunishima: Red Dragonfly

Read "Red Dragonfly" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

You always hear about the “sophomore jinx," referring to an artist's difficulty in coming up with a second recording that at least matches, and hopefully surpasses, his or her debut. That's seems more a problem in popular music, where the talent pool is considerably shallower than in the jazz world.Japanese-born and now London-based pianist Taeko Kunishima suffers no sophomore jinx on her second outing, Red Dragonfly. Her debut, Space to Be... (33 Jazz, 2004), was an auspicious beginning ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Taeko Kunishima: Space to Be...

Read "Space to Be..." reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

Don't let the cover art fool you--it looks as though it would be right at home on the front of a drifty New Age set of sounds. But Space to Be... claims its spot in the mainstream jazz category, taking inspiration from a batch of influences: straight-ahead jazz, modern classical and Japanese folk songs.Pianist Taeko Kunishima began piano studies at a young age in her native Japan, absorbing Mozart and Beethoven and later the modern piano music of ...


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