Sophia Domancich Trio — L'Année des Treize Lunes
(Seventh Records A XV, 1995, CD)
Simon Goubert — Couleurs de Peaux
(Seventh Records A XII, 1993, CD)
by Mike McLatchey, Published 1996-03-01
Jazz. For some reason, this genre of music tends to send many "prog" fans screaming for cover. I've always found this strange considering a lot of jazz (especially from the 60s) was a strong influence on numerous progressives and was an obvious precursor to fusion of the early 70s and beyond. Both of these albums have been released on the Seventh label, and it's no secret that label favorite Christian Vander is a devout John Coltrane disciple, of whose music both of these projects have strong similarities to.
Domancich is a piano player, and her trio plays a very impressionistic jazz of the mid 60s Coltrane or mid to late 60s Miles Davis variety. It somewhat reminds me of the early 70s ECM approach, yet the sound is strongly mid-60s. Domancich's piano playing seems more involved with tone and general feel than virtuosity – in other words closer to Alice Coltrane than McCoy Tyner. The music is often lazy and plaintive, very rarely does it get in high gear. A nice album of contemplative jazz worth checking out.
Simon Goubert is a drummer (although he was the keys player with Vander's Offering as well) yet on his own solo album you don't hear him for 15 minutes, as the opener "Redemption," a Goubert composition, has Vander himself on drums. This album has strong strains of mid 60s Coltrane, especially albums like A Love Supreme, Crescent, or The John Coltrane Quartet Plays albums with lots of modal experimentation, great drumming (whether it's Vander or Goubert) and lots of soloing all around. The playing is quite good, although as my friend ably put it, sounds like Coltrane on a bad night. I don't think anyone expects Goubert's combo to be gods this quick, so I don't want to compare them too closely to Coltrane's classic quartet. This is a spirited album, and without examination you could easily believe this album was from 1965. Solid jazz and worth checking out if you're already familiar with Coltrane, Miles Davis (the last track is a tribute to Miles,) Albert Ayler. Jazz of this specificity was becoming a rare commodity and while these may not be of interest to the average symphonic listener, I found both quite enjoyable and holding an atmosphere that seems to have been lost in the wave of digital techno-fuzak that many call jazz today.
Tomasz Stańko RIP – Tomasz Stańko, one of the greats of Eastern European jazz, has died at the age of 76. Stańko's career started in Krzysztof Komeda's quintet, where he contributed trumpet from 1963-1967, when he formed his own group. He worked extensively with Edward Vesala, Don Cherry, Zbigniew Seifert, Chico Freeman, Howard Johnson, Cecil Taylor, and many others. Many of his recordings have been released by ECM, an association that began in the mid-70s. » Read more
Soft Machine Set to Release New Music – It's been 50 years since The Soft Machine changed the face of music with their first album. Their blend of psychedelic rock and jazz was unique, and while the band went through many changes before disbanding in 1981 — by which time there were no original members remaining — they remained an innovative force with a style all their own. » Read more
7d Surfaces Happy Rhodes Back Catalog – We've covered singer Happy Rhodes before, both for her solo work and recently with The Security Project, but her 11 albums have been hard to track down. Until now. 7d features high-quality downloads of all her releases, and several of them are also available on CD. » Read more
Fred Chalenor RIP – We have news of another sad passing in the world of creative music. Bassist Fred Chalenor, whose creativity featured on albums by Tone Dogs, Caveman Shoestore, and many more, died on June 23, 2018 after a long battle with Alzheimer's. Tributes have poured in from the many musicians and fans whose lives he touched. » Read more