Saturday, August 11, 2018

Krzysztof Lenczowski – Rzeczy Osobiste (2018)

Krzysztof Lenczowski

Krzysztof Lenczowski - cello

Rzeczy Osobiste

REQUIEM 169






By Adam Baruch

This is the second solo album by Polish cellist/composer Krzysztof Lenczowski and his first solo cello recording. Lenczowski is primarily known as a member of the celebrated Atom String Quartet, but he is often involved in other projects as well. The album presents eleven compositions, including three originals and one improvised piece, and the rest are his interpretations of Jazz, Pop and Classical standards, both international and of Polish origin.

This eclectic collection of musical sources serves Lenczowski well, since a solo cello album is a trying experience both for the artists and the listeners. It allows Lenczowski to display his diversity and obvious technical proficiency, as well as to create a multi-faced portrait of his talents. As the album's title suggests ("Personal Things" in Polish) he selected this time a gathering of pieces that he likes, rather than offer a novel musical concept. This bold decision might result in criticism from some "critics", but Lenczowski is obviously way beyond that by now.

The album is a very pleasing listening experience, changing moods and stylistic approaches constantly. The very personal interpretations are often quite removed from the origins, which of course is all for the better. What Lenczowski is saying here is that genres are simply points of reference and music is one. It either works and manages to move the listener or doesn't work, regardless of the genre; a statement I also adhere to.

Overall this is a very unusual, highly personal statement by a superb musician, who wishes to share his personal musical preferences with his listeners, rather than venture into a specific musical venture. Beautifully played and full of elegance and sensitivity, it is a little gem one can return to when the world seems bleak and gloomy. The album is warmly recommended to appreciative listeners, who are tired of flashy and empty statements and need something to hold on to, which is unpretentious and genuinely embracing.

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