Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Slawek Jaskulke - Hong Kong (JMJ, 2009)

Sławek Jaskułke, pianist, though still young is serious player in Polish jazz. Just recently he took part as a sideman in such notable albums like "Alternations" (2008), "Bop Beat" (2009), "Nice And Easy" (2009) or "Facing The Challenge" (2011). Just few weeks ago he issued very good "Duodram" (2011) in duo with pianist Piotr Wyleżoł - highly recommended! But Jaskułke has also a significant streak of discs he recorded as a leader among which one of the most interesting is his solo album recorded during a concert in Hong Kong. 

Almost every jazz pianist in Poland dreams about recording solo album since most of them were educated on Chopin compositions and they kind of consciously or unconsciously imitate romantic manner of this classical music genius pianist. Sometimes such excursions bring great jazz as was in case of Adam Makowicz or Leszek Możdżer (albums like "Chopin" or recently "Komeda"). More often such a task reveals to be too difficult. This solo disc by Jaskułke proves that his aspirations to join the elite of Polish jazz piano players are not without foundations. Highlights of this disc are: excellent version of Coltrane's "Giant Steps", wild "Ludawka" based on Polish folk music and "Chopinada" with Chopin moods first rehearsed than totally transformed in Jaskułke own, individual way. All in all it's definitely worth-checking! 

Please listen to this very interesting version of Coltrane's standard "Moment's Notice":

Author of text: Maciej Nowotny 

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