Sunday, May 27, 2018

Nicolas Masson, Colin Vallon, Patrice Moret, Lionel Friedli ‎– Travelers cd

Swiss clarinet and sax player has been an ECM staple for some years now, having released two albums there with the trio Third Reel, offering gorgeous expansive jazz with generous doses of ambiences, improvisations and some of the best recent melodies in the genre (can anyone forget "Lara's Song"?). This is his second (I think) self-standing album after Departures, whereby his is accompanied by the musicians of his live quarter Parallels, manned among others by Colin Vallon, who's also released  few albums on ECM. by 2018 cd on ECM. On the first track someone could think "oh no another ECM modern dissonant Garbarek-y high-pitched annoying jazz" but fortunately this is not the case. Here we got - mostly - subdued jazz ballads with great communication between the musicians - sometimes Vallon is arguably stealing Masson's thunder actually - and an equal amount of darkness and nostalgic emotion. Given that, there are still some more experimental and atonal moments reminding of Third Reel, especially the percussive chaos of "The Deep" and the slightly threatening "Blurred," which are probably the album's best moments along with the pensive "Almost Forty." Good job.


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