Friday, September 11, 2020

Tomasz Licak - Trouble Hunting (2012)

Tomasz Licak

Tomasz Licak - tenor saxophone, clarinet
Sven Dam Meinild - alto & tenor saxophones
Tomasz Dąbrowski - trumpet, balkan horn
Adi Zukanović - rhodes, keys
Richard Andersson - electric bass
Anders Provis - drums

Trouble Hunting


By Adam Baruch

This is the debut album by the Polish/Danish ensemble Trouble Hunting led by Polish saxophonist/composer Tomasz Licak and including Polish trumpeter Tomasz Dąbrowski, Danish saxophonist Sven Dam Meinild, Bosnian keyboardist Adi Zukanovic, Danish bassist Richard Andersson and drummer Anders Provis. The album presents six original compositions, all by Licak.

The music is typical young European Jazz, which combines composed and freely improvised music, with an emphasis on group improvisation and freedom of expression. Despite the advanced explorations, the music manages to stay coherent and tamed, which allows to the inquisitive listener to hear every little nuance of the individual contributions by the musicians.

The ambience of the music combines the Polish melancholy with the Scandinavian minimalism, which works out splendidly. Despite the young age of these musicians, they all already show signs of their musical personality. Listening to this album almost a decade after it was recorded gives a wonderful perspective on the musical achievements of Licak, Dąbrowski and Meinild, who made numerous other recordings since and solidified their personas.

The album is also a document of the bond that was created between young Polish, Danish and other European musicians around the Odense Music Academy, which created an entire circle of musicians who cooperate actively since their meeting as students, being one of the creative foci of contemporary European Jazz.

This album withstands the test of time splendidly and sounds every bit as interesting as it did at the time of its release. It is definitely worth revisiting and European Free Jazz/Improvised Music connoisseurs should definitely try and get a copy before this album (like so many others) disappears into oblivion. Great stuff!

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