Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Kind Mind - Kind Mind (Self, 2020) ***½

By Stef Gijssels

'Inspired and gentle', 'intimate and inventive' are words that come to mind to describe the warm and quiet improvisations of "Kind Mind", a trio with a very apt name, consisting of Josh Cole on double bass, Karen Ng on alto saxophone and Michael Davidson on vibraphone. 

The first track, 'Inside Voices', is a warm, low volume interaction that sounds like a collective 'monologue intérieur', a common way of expressing feeling, some quietly meandering, others more stinging. Including the quiet middle part, all three musicians share the same voice and demonstrate a wonderful sense of control. The piece is improvised with some composed parts into which it evolves, as if it was the result of the musings that preceded it. 

'The Whale' continues in the same vein: tender and pleasant. There is barely a harsh tone to be heard, no voices are raised, no anger present, let alone rage. The improvisation unrolls like a beautiful lullaby, full of quiet beauty, wonder and surprise. Its subject is clearly not the whale hunt, or the grand size of the animal, but rather its harmonious and noiseless gliding through pristine waters, gradually gaining intensity as it moves forward. 

The third piece, 'Outside Voices', ends the relatively short album. It starts quietly and slowly, again demonstrating a rare intimacy of sound, exchanged with hesitance and surprise by each musician, like precious little offerings given to each other. 

I like the trio's unique musical vision, its tender and determined sound and the way it is delivered: with quality and precision. To create your own voice in the crowded musical environment of today is a feat. 

Listen and download from Bandcamp.

      

2 comments:

  1. Thanks Stef, "intimate" sounds really good right now.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I like this at least 4 1/2 stars. I am very grateful for this blog. Thank everyone who reviews here.

    ReplyDelete

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