Thursday, January 6, 2011

Cukunft - Itstikeyt / Fargangenheit (2010)

What is your first association with Poland? It may well be that it is where Holocaust took place. Although the end of story of Jews in Poland is well known: Nazi Germany, Final Solution, ghettos, concentration camps, Auschwitz, gas chambers, the beginning of this story is much less known. When did Jews settle in Poland? Why? What did make their incredible rise possible? The facts are that before II World War in Eastern Poland Jews made half of population of all cities! Even in Warsaw more than one third of citizens were Jews! 
It is often forgotten that such a long and numerous presence of Jewish culture in Poland means that part of our identity, of our culture is Jewish whether we like it or no. Sense of humour, type of feminine beauty, poetry and last but not least music are some of influences we cannot get rid of. Therefore it should not be surprise that Polish musicians were among first which embraced the idea of renewal of old klezmer music, thriving in Poland, before war, among flourishing Jewish community.
Speaking shortly, we have here 2 CD album comprising jazz version of klezmer music. Clearly influenced by most significant figure in this movement, John Zorn, and music of his Tzadik Records established in 1995 it has yet very original and unique identity. As far as sound of this band is concerned on CD1 which was recorded live it is created by two energetic clarinets of Paweł Szamburski and Michał Górczyński, drums of Paweł Szpura and guitar of Raphael Rogiński, the leader of the a band and composer of most of the music on CD2 (CD1 comprises all traditional tunes). CD2 consists of music recorded in studio between 2004 and 2006 in different line-ups with such musicians as above mentioned Rogiński and Szamburski and additionally Kuba Kossak on bassoon, Adam Różański and Piotr Kaliński on percussion, Tomasz Duda on sax, flutes, clarinet, appearing plus guest vocalists Olga Mysłowska and Ewa Żurakowska.
Energetic, swinging, improvising, full of life and yet somehow bluesy to the point of evocating feeling of tragic loss of so many millions Jewish co-citizens, this music is worthy homage to great Jewish culture and people who created it. I wholeheartedly recommend it to you!
Please, listen to a song from this album:

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