Friday, July 31, 2015

Yeshe – Piastowska 1 (2012)


Antoni Gralak - trumpet
Piotr Pawlak - guitar
Darek Makaruk - keyboards
Paweł Osicki - percussion

Piastowska 1

SONY 887654098221

By Adam Baruch

This is the second album by the Polish ensemble Yeshe, led by the legendary trumpeter/composer Antoni Gralak, who was a member of such groundbreaking Polish ensembles as Free Cooperation, Young Power and Tie Break and participated in countless other projects over the years, including leading his ensembles like Graal and Yeshe. This incarnation of Yeshe includes also guitarist Piotr Pawlak and keyboardist Darek Makaruk who is in charge of a plethora of electronic effects and sampling. The music, all original by Gralak, was recorded live and is dedicated to the Polish pioneering visual Artist Andrzej Urbanowicz.

Stylistically the music presents a wide spectrum of contemporary musical trends and incorporates such diverse influences as Avant-garde Jazz, electronic music, Techno, Industrial and World Music. The amalgamated result is a completely original and unique blend, which is fascinating and electrifying from start to finish.

The basic formula presents Gralak improvising on top of an ambient/sampled background, which changes from track to track both rhythmically and conceptually. A trained listener will hear many citations form Indian and other Far Eastern Cultures, as well as samples of exotic instruments like sitar, tabla and a plethora of others. Gralak's trumpet work is nothing short of brilliant and brings immediately memories of his Free Cooperation cohort Andrzej Przybielski, who is sadly no longer with us. Throughout the entire duration of this album Gralak improvises almost without a break, in a truly phenomenal form.

This album is not only a rare musical gem, but also a wonderful example of completely boundless music, which crosses cultural, stylistic and time borders effortlessly and elegantly. It definitely deserves a much wider recognition that it actually has today. Brilliant stuff!

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