Exposé print issues (1993-2011)
Françoise Toullec — Histoire d'Onk
(Bop City BOBY 10001, 1995, CD)
by Rob Walker, Published 1996-08-01
Pianist Françoise Toullec leads her quintet through some mellow and mysterious avant-garde jazz on this intriguing album. Accompanied by acoustic bass, drums, saxophone, and voice, she creates a free-ish yet meticulously restrained atmosphere, managing to capture a feeling of avant free jazz with a minimum of notes and volume. More active, composed sections featuring a melodic soprano sax lead alternate with quieter, more open parts featuring some wildly expressive utterances from a female voice, accompanied by mysterious piano and bass textures. Still, the defining quality of this album is its subtlety. The mood is very relaxed and a bit unnerving; one is always waiting for the music to expand and open up into something larger, yet it rarely does. Definitely unique, Histoire d'Onk will probably be of interest to those into the more avant-garde explorations of jazz, while others may be left wondering what exactly to make of it.
Related artist(s): Françoise Toullec
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