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(54:52, Great Winds @ Musea Records)
TRACK LIST: 1. Nardis 8:33 2. We Will Meet Again 8:06 3. You Don't Know What Love Is 8:08 4. Caravan 6:15 5. Gemeaux 3:30 6. Naima 7:28 7. Summertime 9:10 8. Peace Piece 3:37 LINEUP: Tania Castro-Uze – flute, piccolo; gaita, cajon Jean Marc Uze – ac. & el. pianos; percussion Jean Baptiste – contrabass; darbouka; voice
Prolusion. “Entre Mundos” is the first outing by WHY NOTE TRIO (WNT from now on), from France.
Analysis. I would have omitted reviewing this disc if it had consisted of cover versions – thankfully, it doesn’t. I’m not sure whether WNT has acted cautiously or bravely by choosing a set of widely known jazz tunes for their debut effort, but this is what we get here: eight compositions by Miles Davis, Duke Ellington, Bill Evans and a few other famous jazz musicians, most of which, though, sound to a much greater degree like being interpreted rather than, say, re-visited by this trio, while some of them go far beyond the framework of the originals. For instance, the trio’s version of Caravan comes across as the band only touching on its main theme-melody, although they do play it – only occasionally. Stylistically, they combine here Jazz-Fusion, World Music and traditional jazz, most of the time focusing on an ensemble sound. Of course, the music is fairly rich in Eastern motifs (as it also is on the first two tracks described below). The flow of ideas is subtle, the performance disciplined, albeit the interactions of the players are ever-shifting. Most effectual, however, are the adaptations of Nardis, You Don't Know What Love Is, We Will Meet Again (the album’s first three tracks) and Summertime, all of which are iconic in delivery, featuring for the most part the entire trio or, in other words, much less duets and solos than any of the-yet-to-be-named ones. Coming across as sets of musical vignettes (in a good sense), both thematically and stylistically, all of these include elements of the above three genres, and also those of classical, symphonic and avant-garde, some of which are brought together, while others (like the latter, for instance) appear in their pure form. A wealth of musical ideas is incorporated into each of them, but the themes are always logically developed, the trio with ease jumping from style to style. The remaining three tracks, Naima, Peace Piece and Gemeaux, are way less interesting, however, partly because they are marred by vocalizations and/or exclamations, all of which are unimpressive, to say the least. Musically, the first two of them each is a flute-led jam and a mellow/smooth ballad respectively, the latter only featuring two instruments. As to the latter item, a flute wanders lonely almost all over its first half, and later on it’s only accompanied by percussion.
Conclusion. While the music’s sound surface is harmonious and pleasing enough, most of this CD doesn’t work as background listening. Jazz heads, lend an ear to it – you should find it a rewarding listen. Yes, while certainly progressive in its own right, it is hardly of interest to progressive rock lovers.
VM=Vitaly Menhikov: February 3, 2012
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