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Friday, July 19, 2013

Vyacheslav Guyvoronsky, Ahsan, Kucherov - Around Silence (Leo, 2013) ****

By Stef 

The combination of trumpet playing and Indian singing is not new : Irene Schweitzer introduced it on "Jazz Meets India" - or was it Don Cherry? -  some years ago trumpeter Erik Truffaz gave it a try with "Benares", but the real master on the instrument, Russian trumpeter Vyacheslav Guyvoronsky, whose technical skills as a classically trained fierce improviser have been praised before on this blog, now joins forces with Indian singer Niloy Ahsan and tabla-player Denis Kucherov, and the result is really fantastic, especially taken into account that I am not really a fan of carnatic singing.

The album consists of four long tracks, with music that shifts between slow meditative modes to high energy moments. You can call this the music of mysticism and religious spirituality, but in this case it is certainly not : the four pieces offer a joyful and playful interaction between the three musicians, with more often than not Ahsan leading the melodious parts and Guyvoronsky echoing him seamlessly, in a truly amazing fashion.

This is truly about the joy of making music, of joint improvisation, and this joy is maintained throughout the album. It's easy for the listener to join in the joy.