Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Jazzpospolita - Humanizm (2017)

Jazzpospolita

Michał Przerwa-Tetmajer - guitar
Michał Załęski - keyboards
Stefan Nowakowski - bass
Wojciech Oleksiak - drums

Humanizm

PRIVATE EDITION



By Adam Baruch

This is the sixth album by Polish ensemble Jazzpospolita and the last one to feature the original lineup of bassist Stefan Nowakowski, drummer Wojciech Oleksiak, guitarist Michał Przerwa-Tetmajer and keyboardist Michał Załęski. Vocalist Paulina Przybysz is featured on one song and another vocalist Novika is featured on another song. The album presents eleven original compositions, all co-composed by the ensemble members, except the song featuring Przybysz, which was composed and written by her (lyrics in English) and the song featuring Novika that includes her lyrics (in Polish).

Stylistically the music preserves the unique qualities characterizing all the earlier albums by the ensemble, but is somewhat more Pop oriented, not only because of the presence of vocals but primarily due to the melodies being more "tame" and well organized and the instrumental passages being less expressive and searching. In retrospect it might seem that they ran out of steam, being enslaved within a formula, which stopped to "lay the golden eggs".

Nevertheless this music is still a slick aesthetic experience and the atmosphere of dreamy, mysterious and repetitive soundscapes did not lose its magic touch entirely. Przerwa-Tetmajer still produces long, lazy guitar solos that seem to flow on the wind in slow motion, and are easy to impress. The keyboards remain mostly in the background in a supportive role and the rhythm section keeps the music moving ahead gently, with little rhythmic variety. The two songs don't really belong with the rest of the music and as far as I am concerned don't contribute anything in the big picture.

Overall this is still Jazzpospolita, and these guys are masters of ambient Jazz/Fusion, so the album is still very enjoyable altogether, although it created little reverberation on the scene at the time of its release. For dedicated fans of the group this album is of course a must, but their next album with a new lineup and new musical direction proves to be much more rewarding. Still definitely worth investigating!

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