Magda Mayas (Germany) performs on a 1970s manufactured clavinet with reedman Jim Denley (Australia), augmented by their use of field recordings, as they pay homage to a "marginalized corner" of Sydney, Australia on this experimental and irrefutably adventurous improv fest. Yet I wouldn't be so bold to suggest that this is easy listening but for the most part, it's relatively subdued.
The duo projects organic minimalism amid the sounds of nature and bizarre tone poems that move forward in asymmetrical fashion. At times Mayas seems to be tinkering with the innards of her clavinet as Denley counterbalances and tints many of these fragmented motifs with otherworldly sounds, where the trajectories are either solemn, nervy, peaceful or droning. The field recordings are melded somewhere in between or in the background and not always easy to detect. Hence, the musicians execute a musical jigsaw puzzle of sorts but are apt to lull you into a groove.
It's largely a polytonal endeavor as the duo's creative forces impart a strange but captivating vernacular or dichotomy. On the final track "Arrival," the artists' hissing and plucking sounds emit a sense of isolation, peppered by Mayas' dainty clavinet voicings and Denley's whirling bass flute lines along with various noise shaping activities that allude to a series of tribal thematic expositions. Nonetheless, it's a rather challenging program. Coupled with the detailed audio experience, Tempe Jetz tenders additional surprises on successive listens.
Track Listing: A Departure; Customs Declaration; In Transit; Arrival.
Personnel: Magda Mayas: clavinet, field recordings; Jim Denley: alto saxophone, bass flute,
Title: Tempe Jetz
| Year Released: 2017
| Record Label: Relative Pitch Records
I was first exposed to jazz when I discovered that one of Jimi Hendrix's influences was Wes Montgomery. I played guitar growing up and idolized Hendrix, so I knew that anyone he looked up to must be good
I was first exposed to jazz when I discovered that one of Jimi Hendrix's influences was Wes Montgomery. I played guitar growing up and idolized Hendrix, so I knew that anyone he looked up to must be good. I was 16 at the time. I went to Tower Records and purchased a CD by Wes, and I was hooked from the very first ten seconds. The sound of the song Lolita illuminated my bedroom, as I just sat back amazed at how colorful and soulful this music was--I understood it, even though at the time I didn't understand how to go about playing it. I get chills listening to Wes' solo on Lolita, and I can still listen to that song ten times in a row and never get tired of it. There is a truly timeless quality to genuinely spontaneous jazz music, and it is that quality that has inspired me to devote my life to studying and playing this music.