334

Anouar Brahem: Thimar

By

Sign in to view read count
Anouar Brahem: Thimar Once again ECM expands the boundaries of jazz. This brings up the question of whether this music is jazz, and purists would argue that it's not: no blues, no standards, no drums. Why not go all the way and decry the absence of banjo and tuba? The fact is that there are elements of jazz here, including group improvisation, rhythmic propulsion, and two established jazz players, Surman and Holland. But the listener who appreciates this release will be someone who likes music which is original and thoughtful, enjoys the exoticism of the references to the music of North Africa, and appreciates the seamless fusion which these three players bring to these extraordinary performances. "Reference" is the right word here, since there's nothing parochial or regional in this music: it's truly a meeting on common ground.

There's a focused intensity in the performance of these compositions. The pieces are complex and varied, with long meditative out-of-tempo solos turning into fast and exhilarating ensembles. It can be difficult to determine where arrangement ends and improvisation begins, since these three masters have all reached a point where adding to the mix comes spontaneously. Sometimes the results sound close to the music of Brahem's native Tunisia, and at others they have a late-night urban quality, everyone gone to bed except the musicians in their recording studio. Whatever this uncategorizable music is, it's fresh and beautiful, as the instrumental combination of horn, oud and bass both touches many traditions and stands uncaptured by any. The wide ranging expression and beautiful production ensure that this recording will stand up to repeated listening.


Track Listing: Badhra; Kashf; Houdouth; Talwin; Waqt; Uns; Al Hizam Al Dhahbi; Qurb; Mazad; Kernow; Hulmu Rabia.

Personnel: Anouar Brahem: oud; John Surman: soprano saxophone, bass clarinet; Dave Holland: bass.

| Record Label: ECM Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door CD/LP/Track Review The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 25, 2017
Read The Angel and the Brute Sing Songs of Rapture CD/LP/Track Review The Angel and the Brute Sing Songs of Rapture
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 25, 2017
Read Coldest Second Yesterday CD/LP/Track Review Coldest Second Yesterday
by John Sharpe
Published: February 25, 2017
Read Chicago II CD/LP/Track Review Chicago II
by Doug Collette
Published: February 25, 2017
Read Follow Your Heart CD/LP/Track Review Follow Your Heart
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 25, 2017
Read Over the Rainbow CD/LP/Track Review Over the Rainbow
by Paul Rauch
Published: February 24, 2017
Read "As it Was" CD/LP/Track Review As it Was
by Karl Ackermann
Published: July 18, 2016
Read "Metamorphosis" CD/LP/Track Review Metamorphosis
by James Nadal
Published: July 10, 2016
Read "First Set" CD/LP/Track Review First Set
by Jerome Wilson
Published: February 6, 2017
Read "The Outlier" CD/LP/Track Review The Outlier
by Jerome Wilson
Published: July 22, 2016
Read "Heavy Feel" CD/LP/Track Review Heavy Feel
by Doug Collette
Published: May 21, 2016
Read "Mingus, Mingus, Mingus" CD/LP/Track Review Mingus, Mingus, Mingus
by Troy Dostert
Published: September 21, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!