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Cliffs, Floy Krouchi, James Brandon Lewis, Benjamin Sanz


Label: Off

Format: CD

Genre: Jazz

In process of stocking

When the best American sax player of the moment ( grammy, pools, magazines) James Brandon Lewis meets one of the most interesting French fretless bass electronic visionary Floy Krouchi and French avant-garde drummer Benjamin Sanz and they spend a week improvising in the south of France, they come with one of the best contemporary jazz album of the year!

"Lewis ventures off the map on Cliffs, an eponymous triumvirate completed by the French pair of fretless electric bassist Floy Krouchi and drummer Benjamin Sanz. The former, whose Bass Holograms project in New York enlisted the likes of drummer Ches Smith, cellist Hank Roberts and singer Emilie Lesbros, supplements her sound with effects ranging from ambient washes to jagged distortions while with his combination of textural mischief and locomotive meter, the latter shows why his credits include David Murray, Archie Shepp, Oliver Lake and more.

The centerpiece, and at 22-minutes by far the longest track, the jointly composed “The Three Streams” evolves through multiple moods from brooding sustains, from which emerge a searching melody sketched by feathery tenor, to an electric bass meditation over a sparse soundscape, to a percolating vamp, which finds Lewis stretching out too, his rhythmic cadences echoing Sanz’ pulse, before uniting in a repeated ostinato to finish. On the remaining five improvs the trio carve an egalitarian path, but one which often breaks into mesmeric beats and not only during the descriptively titled “Transe With Arabesques”, but also in the rocky opening “The Door To The Cliffs”, where Krouchi comes on like a revving motorbike and Lewis brings a reflective whiff of John Coltrane.

Even in such almost entirely uncharted territory, Lewis’ penchant for form shines through, in the alternation between a siren-like oscillation and strings of pneumatic squeezed-out notes and in his juxtaposition of similarly contrasting figures elsewhere." - New-York City Jazz Record

Cat. number: OCD052
Year: 2022

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