Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Dominik Strycharski & Rafał Mazur – Myriad Duo (2015)

Dominik Strycharski & Rafał Mazur

Dominik Strycharski - sopranino, alto, tenor & bass recorders/blockflutes
Rafał Mazur - acoustic bass guitar

Myriad Duo



FSR 02

By Adam Baruch

This is a live recording of spontaneously composed Improvised Music performed by two prominent Polish representatives of the genre: flautist Dominik Strycharski and bass guitarist Rafał Mazur. The performance is edited into five separate tracks, but of course such division exists only for convenience sake and does not disrupt the natural flow of the music.

I have often stated that Improvised Music finds itself at the disadvantage of being mostly a live/real time experience and very rarely transforms itself into a lasting experience, when recorded and later released on record, with rare exceptions of course. This, fortunately, is one of those rare exceptions, where the music, or whatever one might want to call this encounter between two artists, remains completely relevant on record and deserves repeated listening.

For people familiar with the Polish Improvised Music scene with both these innovative musicians since years. Born four years apart in the 1970s, they are both active since the 1990s with increasing frenzy, producing over time dozens of recordings and leading numerous projects, both in Poland and abroad. This is their first encounter as a duo, and luckily that live concert was also captured for posterity and released on this album.

The flute/recorder, one of the ancient human instruments, is sadly neglected in Jazz and Improvised Music and therefore Strycharski's virtuosity as a flautist is especially appreciated, especially in these circumstances. His beautiful tone poems and quirky improvisations are a delightful trip in space/time and a rare example of concentrated minimalism as an Art form. The melodic stream and the myriad of tiny notes merge into a wonderful soundscape.

Mazur, who is a virtuoso bassist, is also a musician with a truly chameleonic ability to adjust his playing to any environment, as already documented on his various recordings. His playing here is therefore accordingly more delicate and low key without of course cutting down anything from its subtlety, sophistication or creativity. As a duo these two musicians function as if their minds amalgamated for the duration of the concert, way beyond just attentive listening and much closer to telepathic communication. In short if anything deserves the title "Art of the Duo", this is it, here and now!

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