All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

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...


Samuel Blaser: Taktlos Zurich 2017

John Sharpe By

Sign in to view read count
Although in existence since 2013, Taktlos Zurich 2017 constitutes the first record by Swiss trombonist Samuel Blaser's Trio with French guitarist Marc Ducret and Danish drummer Peter Bruun. It's worth the wait as Blaser helms a very responsive trio, so attuned to one another's movement that the spaces are as eloquent as the notes. One of the most talented trombonists on the scene, Blaser makes his instrument mutter, growl, speak and sing, sometimes in multiple registers through his control of multiphonics, while at the same time maintaining a melodicism at the core of his sound.

Ducret (who has also majored with reedman Tim Berne) has been on board for previous quartet outings, notably As The Sea (2012) and Boundless (2011), both on Hatology, but the expansive program makes this perhaps the best place to admire his lexicon of fuzzed snarls, bent notes, ringing reverberations and scrapes. His orneriness helps spice Blaser's conception, as does Bruun's crisp spikiness and frequent avoidance of overt meter. Five titles spread across four cuts include one of the leader's originals alongside three from the pen of the guitarist and one unusual cover. But whatever the authorship, the realizations are flexible enough to suggest spontaneity.

As such, a genuine sense of discovery permeates the unhurried expositions. Thus the opening "Stoppage" shifts from improv give-and-take to knotty unisons, before unfolding to showcase Ducret's elongated corkscrewing lines, a drum solo which pays as much attention to timbre as rhythm, and Blaser's vocal inflections with his mute which create a testifying feel towards the close. The trombonist's reading of Stravinsky's "Fanfare For A New Theatre" proceeds with loose accompaniment which periodically snaps into focus, before segueing into Ducret's gentle lullaby "Useless Knowledge" which serves as a lyrically downbeat coda.

The remainder of the album offsets the somewhat abstract nature of the first half with more earthy moments, most obvious on the final "How To Lose." After a confab of scrawling guitar distortions, wah-wahed trombone and rattling percussion, the track settles into a funky swagger, held down variously by each of the principals, before an understated finale which, although it slightly dissipates the preceding energy, is of a piece with the classy conversational interplay which characterizes this disc.

Track Listing: Stoppage; Fanfare For A New Theatre / Useless Knowledge; Jukebox; How To Lose.

Personnel: Samuel Blaser: trombone; Marc Ducret: guitar; Peter Bruun: drums.

Title: Taktlos Zurich 2017 | Year Released: 2018 | Record Label: Hatology


comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
General Articles
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles


NoBusiness Records

Spring Rain

Spring Rain

Whirlwind Recordings

A Mirror to Machaut

A Mirror to Machaut

Songlines Recordings

As The Sea

As The Sea



Related Articles

Read Brothers CD/LP/Track Review
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: September 24, 2018
Read The Fearless Flyers CD/LP/Track Review
The Fearless Flyers
by John Bricker
Published: September 24, 2018
Read Super Mood CD/LP/Track Review
Super Mood
by Glenn Astarita
Published: September 24, 2018
Read Beheaded Totem CD/LP/Track Review
Beheaded Totem
by James Fleming
Published: September 24, 2018
Read New Hope CD/LP/Track Review
New Hope
by Jack Bowers
Published: September 23, 2018
Read The Nobuki Takamen Trio CD/LP/Track Review
The Nobuki Takamen Trio
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 23, 2018
Read "The Pocket Philharmonic Orchestra, Peter Stangel – Beethoven Revisited Symphonies 1-9" CD/LP/Track Review The Pocket Philharmonic Orchestra, Peter Stangel –...
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: March 24, 2018
Read "Gnosis" CD/LP/Track Review Gnosis
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 27, 2017
Read "Improcreations" CD/LP/Track Review Improcreations
by Tyran Grillo
Published: February 2, 2018
Read "Live In Europe" CD/LP/Track Review Live In Europe
by Victor L. Schermer
Published: May 16, 2018
Read "Music IS" CD/LP/Track Review Music IS
by John Kelman
Published: March 9, 2018
Read "Cubafonía" CD/LP/Track Review Cubafonía
by Matt Hooke
Published: December 26, 2017