The latest album by Brahja Waldman’s Quartet is a double-album experience, offering two different stylistic jazz experiences. ‘Cosmic Brahjas/Closer To The Tones’ is one of the latest releases to come from Howl! Arts Collective, who released Stefan Christoff’s debut release ‘Temps Libre’. Brahja Waldman’s Quartet demonstrate on their latest album a brilliant understanding of all the capabilities of the jazz genre, offering up an incredibly rich and vibrant experience. The two albums cover different grounds, both being very different jazz albums. It is an incredibly interesting jazz music experience, and one that is refreshing to hear in these modern times of music.
Both albums cover different grounds of music, whilst all encompassing the very elements of jazz music itself. On ‘Cosmic Brahjas’, we see the band delve straight into the heart and soul of instrumental jazz music, with the album utilizing the use of the piano in fine style (which is absent on ‘Closer To The Tones’). The result on the first disc is a wonderful array of jazz instrumentals, each weaving their own stories and emotions. There’s a wonderful sense of community in the music, with the idea of each musician coming together to create something that they are proud of. There’s some wonderful pumped up moments of brilliant jazz sections, with one brief inclusion of vocals, which helps to really stands out on the album. On the second disc, the piano is replaced with a tenor saxophone, which helps to draw a somewhat different style out of the genre, giving the whole experience some brilliant vibrancy and diversity. Both albums are incredibly enjoyable, and both rather different to each other in some respects.
If any weaknesses are to be found, it is arguably in the album’s second disc ‘Closer To The Tones’. Musically, the whole album is brilliant, though when compared to the album’s first disc ‘Cosmic Brahjas’, it seems to pale in comparison. Many of the elements on the disc work incredibly well, though it seems that it never quite manages to reach the heights that the first disc manages to hit. It doesn’t ruin the whole overall album experience though, and in some ways, it is refreshing that the second disc of music on this double-album experience is in some ways different to the first disc. It helps to keep things moving along, and also prevents certain elements from getting stale or boring.
Overall, ‘Cosmic Brahjas/Closer To The Tones’ is one of the most enjoyable jazz album releases to have come out in recent years. What is present on this album is a quartet who clearly have a great understanding of all the strengths of jazz music, but rather than just churn out all the same old jazz music that is often heard, they add in their own heart and soul to the music. There seems to be a great sense that each of the musicians on the album are enjoying what it is they are doing, which helps to make the whole album experience an incredibly vibrant and enjoyable one.
- ★★★★☆ 4/5
- Wise Love
- My Heart Is A Real Thing
- Cosmic Dance
- Lonely Glory
Brahja Waldman’s Quartet’s latest double-album ‘Cosmic Brahjas/Closer To The Tones’ is out now, and can be purchased at: http://brahjawaldman.bandcamp.com/