KAVORKA Cul­ture Shock


Self-re­leased Slo­vakian sax­o­phon­ist Peter Dobai came to Dublin to study at New­park Mu­sic Cen­tre and de­cided to stick around, mak­ing a name for him­self around town with his big sound and vol­u­ble play­ing. Dobai’s Kavorka group is an apt re­flec­tion of the stu­dent body in New­park’s in­ter­na­tion­ally renowned jazz depart­ment, with Hun­gar­ian bassist Péter Erdei, Venezue­lan pi­anist Leopoldo Osio and Ir­ish drum­mer Shane O’Don­a­van adding their own flavour to Dobai’s like­able com­po­si­tions. Cul­ture Shock is an apt name for the re­sult­ing sounds, which em­brace Lat­inAmer­i­can and Balkan tra­di­tions as well as funk, hip-hop and con­tem­po­rary clas­si­cal el­e­ments. At heart, how­ever, this is an old-school jazz al­bum, with good grooves, plenty of group in­ter­play and, in Dobai and Osio, two soloists ca­pa­ble of tak­ing the mu­sic to in­ter­est­ing places. pe­ter­dobai.com/kavorka


Fluxus Out Note Records The stand-out act at the re­cent 12 Points fes­ti­val of new Euro­pean jazz in Umea, Swe­den, LAB are a trio of shock­ingly young Bel­gians play­ing with the sort of con­vic­tion and sense of pur­pose that usu­ally only comes with a lot more ex­pe­ri­ence. But then, drum­mer Lan­ders Gy­sel­nick, pi­anist Bram De Looze and bassist An­neleen Boehme have been play­ing to­gether since they were teenagers, and it shows in the or­ganic ebb and flow of ideas around the band. With such a line-up, you might be tempted to call LAB a piano trio, but that doesn’t re­ally do jus­tice to their demo­cratic sound. And al­though De Looze is more than worth his place out front, it’s Gy­sel­nick who’s re­ally driv­ing the bus. Ex­pect to hear a whole lot more from this pow­er­fully cre­ative trio. outhere-mu­sic.com

Eu­gene Ugorski (vi­o­lin), BBC Scot­tish SO Michal Dworzyn­ski

Hype­r­ion CDA 67990 Emil Mly­narski (1870-1935), the fa­ther-in-law of pi­anist Arthur Ru­bin­stein, be­gan his ca­reer as a violinist but be­came bet­ter known as a con­duc­tor and or­gan­iser than as a com­poser. His two vi­o­lin con­cer­tos (1897 and 1916) are al­ways vir­tu­osi­cally ef­fec­tive and steer well clear of the more tur­bu­lent de­vel­op­ments of their time. The Sec­ond stands out through the colour of its or­ches­tra­tion, and the lively dancing of its fi­nale is its high­light. Alexan­der Zarzyski (18341895) is re­mem­bered for his Mazurka in G, which fea­tures here in its rarely heard orig­i­nal guise with orches­tra. In fact, the folk­sier the mu­sic on this disc, the bet­ter it sounds in Eu­gene Ugorski’s alert per­for­mances. url.ie/4qdb

Rod­er­ick Wil­liams (bari­tone), BBC Singers, Nash En­sem­ble/ Ni­cholas Kok


Signum Clas­sics There’s some­thing appealingly un­com­pro­mis­ing in these cho­ral works by Har­ri­son Birtwistle. Even the idea of set­ting Robin Blaser’s A Lit­er­al­ist (prompted by the sounds of a moth trapped in­side a piano) for voices, three harps and alto flute, ap­peals. But Birtwistle makes the mu­sic vis­cer­ally ele­giac as well. His will­ing­ness to force him­self and his per­form­ers into the be­yond is pretty con­sis­tent, whether it’s keep­ing the so­pra­nos of the BBC Singers on ex­tended high-range duty, or pro­vid­ing a per­sis­tent, un­set­tling back­ground on the dar­buka (an Arab gob­let drum) in The Ring Dance of the Nazarene, The reper­toire cov­ers nearly half a century of Birtwistle’s out­put, and the vi­sion is con­sis­tently acute. url.ie/gb48

Jonathan Aas­gaard (cello), Martin Roscoe (piano)

Avie AV 2300 (2 CDs) What are the ex­tras that cause Brahms’s cello mu­sic to need a sec­ond CD? In ad­di­tion to the two sonatas, Jonathan Aas­gaard, prin­ci­pal cel­list of the Royal Liver­pool Phil­har­monic Orches­tra, of­fers ar­range­ments of the First Vi­o­lin Sonata, five Hun­gar­ian Dances, six songs, the slow move­ment of the Sec­ond Piano Con­certo, and the FAE Scherzo, orig­i­nally for vi­o­lin and piano. Strangely, the sense of mu­si­cal en­gage­ment is ac­tu­ally higher in the ar­range­ments of the vi­o­lin pieces than in the cello sonatas, where the piano too of­ten sounds to be a sub­servient to the very care­ful cello rather than an equal part­ner. It’s the First Vi­o­lin Sonata, trans­posed down a fifth for the cello, which is best of all. url.ie/e8oo

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