Jazzfest Berlin – New York
Ingrid Laubrock & Kris Davis // Jim Black Trio
The duo Ingrid Laubrock & Kris Davis is devoted to sonic exploration through improvisation, using its written material as meticulously detailed maps into the unknown. The Jim Black Trio creates a pleasurable tension between tender melody and rhythmic fragmentation.
Livestream from New York
Ingrid Laubrock & Kris Davis: “Blood Moon”
Saxophonist Ingrid Laubrock, a native of Germany who moved to New York in 2008, has forged a formidable working relationship with the versatile pianist Kris Davis, whose 2019 album “Diatom Ribbons” topped the prestigious 2019 NPR Jazz Critics Poll. Over more than a decade they’ve played together in numerous ensembles, including Laubrock’s Anti-House and the collective trio Paradoxical Frog, with drummer Tyshawn Sorey. They’ve developed a strong rapport, and their bond has never sounded more simpatico than on this year’s sublime duo recording “Blood Moon”, where it’s often hard to tell where compositions end and improvisations begin. Each musician explores extended techniques and bracing harmonic effects, whether it’s the microtonal smudges and smears on Laubrock title composition, which give the performance a beguiling wobble suggesting a warped record, or the Davis piece “Flying Embers,” where she deploys several e-bows on the strings of her instrument to produce a microscopically pulsating drone of overtones over which the pair patiently develop a muted conversation of raindrop keyboard patterns and breathy, striated arcs and lyric fragments.
Ingrid Laubrock saxophones
Kris Davis piano
Livestream from Berlin
Jim Black Trio
Over the years drummer Jim Black has led a divers collection of his own combos, but few have been more arresting than this long-running trio with Berlin-based Austrian pianist Elias Stemeseder and New York bassist Thomas Morgan. The group’s most recent album “Reckon” offered a thrilling shift in methodology, with the musicians improvising and, in a few cases, composing the material together in the rehearsal room. Black’s playing always pushes against the seams of written material – revelling in chaos while maintaining an unerring sense of propulsion – and that’s no exception here. On the most frenzied pieces, there is a lean clarity to each individual line, but together they become pulse-quickening, with each component generating new friction in its off-kilter push. Pianist Elias Stemeseder rotates between sinuous melody and mosaic complexity, employing serrated counterpoint and inventive prepared piano treatments to emerge as an analog to Black. The group can at times bask in patient, lyric beauty, engineering an exquisite tension between tender melody and frequently frenetically-fractured rhythmic mayhem. New Yorker Black arrived in Berlin two years ago and has already taken root musically in the city. At this years Jazzfest Berlin, Felix Henkelhausen, an outstanding and promising talent of the younger Berlin scene, will fill in for Thomas Morgan.
Jim Black drums
Elias Stemeseder keys
Felix Henkelhausen bass
These concerts are part of Jazzfest Berlin – New York