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Satoko Fujii has the capability of making music in several different contexts and breathing life into each one of them. She is back with her quartet for a third album—and if hope springs eternal, that hope is fully realised. The elements of surprise and change are the constants which make listening to her and her band well worth anticipating.
Fujii likes to compose at a tangent. There are no straight-ahead manifestations in her writing. Whatever the approach, whether it is immersed in dark swirling mist or in the calm flow of a ballad, there is always a dramatic air that ignites the interaction between the players. Even the fractured rhythm pronounced by drummer Tatsuya Yoshida on “First Tango” sets up the blithe run of Natsuka Tamura on trumpet who essays the melody enhanced by the bass of Takeharu Hayakawa, giving the song its rhythmic due. Fujii is chock-full of harmonic runs that she strongly accents with chords from her left.
The opening to “Flying to the South” is deceptive; Fujii plays open ended notes before slowly upping the tempo with thunderous chords. She is soon on to a balmier landscape abetted by Tamura, before the rest gather and head off into a happy, sunny atmosphere getting a shot of roiling bass from Hayakawa along the way. The array of sound and hue that carries “15 Minutes to Get to the Station” is compelling. The atmosphere crackles first from the use of open, into which is immersed the vocal cries of Yoshida, and then the whirlwind that sweeps through on Tamura’s trumpet eddied by the bass and drums as the song rocks strongly onward before reining in and ending on a gentle plain.
Whatever form the music may take, whatever directions it may break into, at the end it all coalesces into a cogent whole. And that is something worth listening to.
Track Listing: The Future of the Past; As Usual; Flying to the South; First Tango; One Summer Day; Clear Sky
Personnel: Satoko Fujii
Year Released: 2004
| Record Label: NatSat Music
| Style: Modern Jazz
I love jazz because with it I found my true voice. I have always sung since I was a very small child in school and church. And there have been many genre that I have enjoyed including spiritual, folk, country, latin, soca and pop
I love jazz because with it I found my true voice. I have always sung since I was a very small child in school and church. And there have been many genre that I have enjoyed including spiritual, folk, country, latin, soca and pop. But nothing has touched my artistic sensiblities like JAZZ! Two years ago I moved to Sarasota, FL where I renewed my focus on my singing career and I was so impressed with the quality, quantity and generousity of talented jazz musicains in the Suncoast area. I soon partnered with piano legend Billy Marcus and his trio with Don Mopsick and Stephen Bucholtz. What a blast working with these guys and having them back me up on my first jaz album, Here's To You... which was just released on October 1st. I can't wait to see where the coming year brings me! Check out syniacarrolljazz.com