Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Non Violent Communication – Obserwacje (2019)

Non Violent Communication

Rafał Wawszkiewicz - saxophone
Michał Głowacki - electronics
Łukasz Lembas - bass
Arek Lerch - drums


AUDIO CAVE 2019/004

By Adam Baruch

This is the debut album by the Polish Quasi-Jazz quartet Non Violent Communication, which consists of saxophonist Rafał Wawszkiewicz, electronics manipulator Michał Głowacki, bassist Łukasz Lembas and drummer Arek Lerch. The album offers four lengthy sound vistas, not credited on the album's artwork and assumed to be co-composed by all four quartet members.

The music hits the listener right in the stomach from the first moment and keeps pushing relentlessly till the very last notes with an avalanche of sound in the true "wall of sound" tradition, which is extremely potent and effective. There is little melody as such, rather sound riffs that the saxophone develops into continuous improvisation, backed up by a solid bass groove and busy, but coherent drumming, all of which happens over sheets of electronic ambient noise. As strange as all this might sound, all this mayhem makes perfect sense and the music is overwhelmingly successful. Any attempt to categorize this weird but beautiful experiment is futile as it defines a completely, although not entirely innovative, new idiom.

Wawszkiewicz is a monster saxophonist, perhaps not by Jazz standards, but he is able to keep the music rolling and not repeat himself for the entire duration. He plays like a Rock star on speed, but never loses control or focus. The rhythm section is there behind the saxophone at all times, with the bass steady like a rock, pulsating like a swinging heartbeat and the drums all over the place but always exactly on time. But it is the electronics that make all the difference here, since the saxophone/rhythm section would have probably run out of steam and sound hollow without the background effects.

Without analyzing the music much further, this album is a sound bomb that resonates with such power that it simply can't be ignored. I can already see the faces of the Jazz "critics" trying to swallow this music, sweating profusely. This is definitely an event, that happens only every now and than and one can only hope that some people will really get it. Personally I love it to bits and hope it gets the attention it deserves, which is not always the case with truly innovative and daring music. Congratulations are in order!

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