Thursday, June 23, 2022

Jean-Pierre Jullian Quintet, Foret Lacandone


Jazz composers when they are good make for music of a high level. It is surely so on the recent album by composer/drummer Jean-Pierre Jullian and his Quintet doing an album entitled Foret Lacandone (Mazeto Square 37700057053050). The instrumentation is not entirely the norm and that plus the players' sympathy and prowess form a strong foundation for the works Jullian brings to us, some 16 compact but detailed inventions.

Jullian puts complex contrapuntal dynamic lines in motion for the band of alto/baritone sax (Guillaume Orti), transverse flute, bass flute and piccolo (Etienne Lecomte), vibraphone and marimba (Tom Gariel), contrabass (Claude Tchamitchian)  and the composer on drums. The players each address their jigsaw-like connected parts with lyricism and drive and when called upon improvise smartly around the structures of each piece. It is not entirely about the improvisations but they fit in with the kind of relevancy and stylistic acumen one would expect.

In the end it is the charts by Jullian that carry the day, with a modern tang and grit and a multiple line motion that swings yet caresses our musical senses at the same time. It is original, very inventive, complexly, rhythmically engaging and a joy to hear. Jullian is the real thing. Bravo. Hear this one, get it!

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