Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

2

Kazuki Yamanaka: Songs Unconscious-minded

Budd Kopman By

Sign in to view read count
Alto and soprano saxophonist Kazuki Yamanaka has brought together an impressive array of talent to join him in producing Songs Unconscious-minded. The album's title is a reference to how the seven original tunes bubbled up from Yamanaka's unconscious and presented themselves.

The supporting personnel is grouped differently on the various tracks: pianist Fabian Almazan, bassist Linda May Han Oh and drummer E.J. Strickland are together on tracks 1 ("Let Go") and 8 ("HAMABE-NO-UTA -Song Of Seashore"); track 3 ("TA-KE-YA-BU") finds Oh together with pianist Dana Malseptic and drummer Aaron Seeber; track 4 ("Do I Have A Blues") groups Malseptic with bassist Dean Torrey and Seeber; track 6 ("Lexington At 50th Street") has Almazan, Torrey and Strickland while track 7 ("Vertigo") has Malseptic (on Fender Rhodes), Torrey and Seeber; tracks 2 ("Portrait Of Midnight") and 5 ("Prayer (Remembering March 11th)") are duets (the latter on soprano sax) with Malseptic. Guitarists Gilad Hekselman (tracks 1, 3 and 8) and Daisuke Abe (track 4) also lend a hand.

Yamanaka, on either instrument, uses very little vibrato with a slightly thin and acidic timbre, which produces music and lines that feel a bit distant and reserved. These sonics fit very well with his compositional style which is firmly in the post-bop modern abstract mainstream.

This is not to say that emotion is missing in all of the abstraction. The duets are both very poignant and heartfelt, and it here that we get know Yamanaka, the person. As noted elsewhere, the last track "HAMABE-NO-UTA" (composed by Tamezo Narita, and arranged by Yamanaka) sums everything up. This tune's mood, a simple folk-like melody which hovers between melancholy and optimism is introduced by Yamanaka on soprano, accompanied by guitar and bass. When drums and piano enter the energy level rises, as does the optimism and the emotional connection.

Yamanaka is clearly a very serious and intense player, who is beginning the journey of personal introspection through his music. Just as obviously is his talent as noted by the company he keeps. Songs Unconscious-minded is but the beginning of his career.

Track Listing: Let Go; Portrait Of Midnight; TA-KE-YA-BU; Do I Have A Blues?; Prayer (Remembering March 11th); Lexington At 50th Street; Vertigo; HAMABE- NO-UTA - Song Of Seashore.

Personnel: Kazuki Yamanaka: soprano saxophone; Gilad Hekselman: guitar; Fabian Almazan: piano; Linda Oh: bass; E.J. Strickland: drums.

Title: Songs Unconscious-minded | Year Released: 2015 | Record Label: Self Produced

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Shop Music & Tickets

Click any of the store links below and you'll support All About Jazz in the process. Learn how.

Related Articles

Read I Always Knew CD/LP/Track Review
I Always Knew
by Paul Rauch
Published: December 12, 2018
Read It's Alright To Dream featuring JD Allen CD/LP/Track Review
It's Alright To Dream featuring JD Allen
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 12, 2018
Read SHIFTED CD/LP/Track Review
SHIFTED
by James Fleming
Published: December 12, 2018
Read Volume One CD/LP/Track Review
Volume One
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: December 12, 2018
Read Songs in the Key of Wonder CD/LP/Track Review
Songs in the Key of Wonder
by Geannine Reid
Published: December 12, 2018
Read Vilddjur CD/LP/Track Review
Vilddjur
by Ian Patterson
Published: December 11, 2018
Read "Manna for Thought" CD/LP/Track Review Manna for Thought
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: August 2, 2018
Read "Svårmod Och Vemod Är Värdesinnen" CD/LP/Track Review Svårmod Och Vemod Är Värdesinnen
by Vitalijus Gailius
Published: November 19, 2018
Read "Duke Ellington In Coventry" CD/LP/Track Review Duke Ellington In Coventry
by Chris Mosey
Published: June 8, 2018
Read "Fine Dining" CD/LP/Track Review Fine Dining
by Glenn Astarita
Published: April 29, 2018
Read "A Year Ago Today" CD/LP/Track Review A Year Ago Today
by Doug Collette
Published: March 18, 2018
Read "Flyin' Through Florida" CD/LP/Track Review Flyin' Through Florida
by Jack Bowers
Published: August 22, 2018