by Roger Farbey
In the late 1990s, bassist Avishai Cohen was living and working in New York, having arrived a few years earlier from Israel. Out of the blue he received a phone call from Chick Corea which effectively changed his life. Not only did Corea offer Cohen a recording contract on the pianist's Stretch label, he also invited him to join him in a new acoustic group, Origins. This association culminated in a handful of albums between 1997 and 2000, with both ...read more
by Elliott Simon
Possessing a concise pithy tone on his tenor sax that at times can be reverential, Jimmy Greene also surprises with an ability to translate that same depth to soprano, when making the switch for the odd tune. Greene's quartet consists of pianist Xavier Davis, bassist Reuben Rogers and drummer Eric Harland, and, while this ensemble fits squarely in the world of precise modern jazz, the tunesdue in equal measure to Greene's respect for melody and compositional skillstand on their own ...read more
by Eyal Hareuveni
Israeli guitarist and oudist Amos Hoffman reaches a fine balance between his main instruments on this fine recording. The guitar sounds natural and organic in Middle-eastern scales, while the oud fits perfectly in the swinging jazz sensibilities. Hoffman articulates a clear and melodic outline on both instruments, while he crosses genres. Hoffman is backed by veteran Israeli jazz musicians like bassist/producer Ilan Salem, his friend Avishai Cohenand percussionist Ilan Katchka. Promising young players such as percussionist Itamar ...read more
by Frederick Bernas
With this release on his own Razdaz Recordz, Avishai Cohen firmly entrenches himself as a frontrunning innovator in the piano trio medium. The Israeli bassist is joined by Mark Guiliana on drums and countryman Shai Maestro on piano--the latter a change in personnel from Continuo (Razdaz, 2006) and Live At The Blue Note (Razdaz, 2007). Seattle" represents a slightly ponderous start, with a lyrical bass solo from Cohen over meandering chordal piano vamps, but it is not ...read more
by Andrew Velez
Acclaimed Israeli bassist (and accomplished pianist) Avishai Cohen brings an impressive list of credits to his first outing with a new trio. Cohen's work defies easy categorization. On bass he's performed with Brad Mehldau and Chick Corea. The long list of musicians he has accompanied on piano includes Bobby McFerrin, Roy Hargrove, Paquito D'Rivera and Nnenna Freelon, which suggests something about his range. Further still, he has performed concert works with the London and Israeli Philharmonics. So ...read more
by Dr. Judith Schlesinger
The oud is the principal instrument in Middle Eastern music: it's an ancient, fretless, short-necked lute with five pairs of strings and a bass string. On Evolution, his third CD as leader, Amos Hoffman plays the oud he made himself, and offers a fascinating combination of Middle Eastern music and jazz.
The Tel Aviv-based Hoffman wrote all the tunes here, providing a mix of composed and improvised music with hypnotic, sensuous, and insistent rhythms. Aside from ...read more
by Eyal Hareuveni
This is the second recording by Israeli guitarist Amos Hoffman that features him as an oud player, following Na'ama (Magda, 2006). Hoffman, who began playing the guitar when he was six years old and the oud a few years later, studied with Lebanese oud and nay player Bassam Saba, while he was living in New York.
For this recording Hoffman recruited good friend and prominent Israeli bassist Avishai Cohen, after playing on Cohen's recent recordings, veteran Israeli percussionist ...read more