Friday, May 4, 2012

Ecstasy Project – Europae (Monotype Records, 2007)

Ecstasy Project (band)

Rafal Gorzycki - drums
Lukasz Gorewicz - violin
Tomasz Pawlicki - flute
Pawel Nowicki - vibes
Pawel Urowski - double bass

Europae (Monotype Records, 2007)

This is the 3rd album by the Polish ensemble Ecstasy Project, founded and led by drummer / percussionist / composer Rafal Gorzycki. Gorzycki, who is also active in other musical projects, like the excellent Sing Sing Penelope ensemble, formed Ecstasy Project as a vehicle for his compositions, which lay in the fuzzy area between Jazz and contemporary Classical music. The ensemble includes also flautist Tomasz Pawlicki, vibraphonist Pawel Nowicki, violinist Lukasz Gorewicz and bassist Pawel Urowski, and is capable of performing the complex music and creating an atmosphere that bridges between chamber contemporary Classical music and modern Jazz, moving between the two smoothly and seamlessly. The music, almost entirely composed by Gorzycki, is quite intricate at times, but does not cross the point of total alienation to the less experienced listener, keeping enough melody and rhythm to hold on through the more difficult passages. Of course listeners with more experience in Classical music will find this music familiar and quite enchanting from the very first listen. As the title suggests, this is very European music, encapsulating the musical traditions the 19th and 20th Centuries, from neo-romanticism, via atonal experimentation and minimalism, right into the avant-garde. And yet the music is not over-intellectual and leaves a lot to feeling and atmosphere, keeping the overall emotional level alive and aesthetically satisfying. Definitely worth investigation for more adventurous listeners!

Track listing: 1. Maestoso non troppo (7:02); 2. Sempre adaggio (7:38); 3. Allegro vivace animato (4:23); 4. Solo misterioso (1:31); 5. Adlibitum - Allegretto rallentando (9:04); 6. Solo con espressione (1:28); 7. Moderato recitando (9:11); 8. Solo con dolore (1:13); 9. Andantino grazioso cantabile (5:22); 10. Andante con melanconia (6:32)

By Adam Baruch

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