Catalan! Arts

Compilation CD Jazz from Catalonia 2006
Compilation CD Jazz from Catalonia 2006

"Manouche jazz does not exist, I'm a jazzman". The most recent works of Catalan musicians and labels remind you of Biréli Lagrène's words. Because of a clear parallelism: what you hear, with a slight local accent, is jazz. Or best, all the jazz. In this sense, Catalan scene is lively, vibrant.
If one takes a closer look to the landscape of jazz in Catalonia, one can easily understand that its dynamics cannot be summarized in the open spirits of some passioning artists. The notions of time, of progress and of maturity are also important data. In this selection you will find several generations of musicians together; they listen to each other, they measure each other, they deepen in their knowledge of each other. All, artists and producers, share a will to express a "difference". The small interior music that is a manifestation of a true collective breath, says Alex Dutilh, Chief-Editor of the magazine Jazzman. This is what you will hear in this Cd, from the beginning to the end.

This CD is part of a series of three CDs intended to promote Catalan music internationally. The rest of the CDs are: World Music from Catalonia 2006 and Pop Rock from Catalonia 2006.

To listen to the tracks of Jazz from Catalonia 2006, click on the links below.

Sergi Sirvent & Santi Careta: "You do something to me" (4.02)
CD: “Anacrònics”
Autor: Cole Porter

Sergi Sirvent on piano, as a brilliant heir to Tete Montoliu. With the most emblematic instrument of the peninsula, here electrified, a young guitarist who brightly conducts his own group. Two musicians who improvise using their ears first and then their fingers. With an uncontestable rhtymic signature, to project the standard far from bebop.

Iñaki Sandoval Trio: "Sausolito" (5.45)
CD: “Sausolito”
Autor: Iñaki Sandoval

Naturalism over classicism. Thanks to the freshness of his first album, Iñaki Sandoval has freed himself from the formalism of the trio piano-bass-battery. Born in the Basque country, the pianist started studying music in Barcelona and then went on to the Berklee School of Boston. Accompanied by Tete Montoliu's rhythmic section, he seduces through a graceful tune as elegant as classical ballet.

Yesterday's sun
Xavier Casellas: "So it seems (vocal version)" (5.45)
CD: “Yesterday's sun”
Autor: Chris Cheek, Xavier Casellas

A melody by Chris Cheek, some texts written by Xavier Casellas himself, the invitation made to Gorka Benítez (saxo tenor) to join his usual group, already enriched with a guitar. Even if Xavier Casellas' voice has nourished from the crooners his father listened to, what strikes you is his modern way. A real discovery.

Jordi Matas Quintet: "Abril dance" (3.10)
CD: “Racons”
Autor: Jordi Matas

Leading a remarkably homogeneous quintet (in which Jorge Rossy has moved to piano), Jordi Matas breaks through with his second personal recording. A sharp game, an emphatic collective, some open compositions: right now, this jazz would really make it in any New York club. Also, a beautiful promise: Martí Serra's saxo.

Atientas: "Alegrías de medianoche (Round midnight)" (4.29)
CD: “Atientas”
Autor: B. Hanighen, T. Monk, W. C. Cootie

The crossing between feeling and duende, jazz and flamenco, by a particular trio. Founded in 1998, Atientas joins together three personalities open to other musical continents, but focused on jazz. Spiritual children of the groups Oregon and Shakti, they build up a perfectly articulate identity.

Cajonmania: "Tanguillos" (5.02)
CD: “Cajonmania”
Autor: Javi Martín

To start with, a simple idea: to introduce the cajón in a multiplicity of musical concepts. Surrounded by other percussions, a bass and a flamenco voice, this rhythmic box -born in Latin America and imported by Paco de Lucía- reveals, in Àngel Pereira and Nan Mercader's fingers, a surprising musicality.

Wide songs
TGX by Andreu Zaragoza: "Ksa Nva" (4.42)
CD: “Wide songs”
Autor: Andreu Zaragoza

The group TGX was born in Barcelona in 1999: Around the young guitarrist Andreu Zaragoza -who inspired himself in New York to fuse jazz and electronics-, a series of musicians seduced by electronic music and convinced not to leave it only to DJs. Following the advice of Kurt Rosenwinkel, Brad Mehldau or Aka Moon, Andreu Zaragoza builds an over-vitamined jazz generous in pleasure.

City Life
Pybus Groove Quartet: "Platform heels" (4.42)
CD: “City Life”
Autor: Dave Pybus

Funky Barcelona! In the company of a rhythmic section which must have grown up on groove, saxophonist Dave Pybus (born in Canada) certainly remembers the Blue Note seventies' funk. He has written a repertoire suited to dancing until dawn.

Cançons líquides
Carme Cuesta & Joan Sanmartí: "Cançons líquides" (5.38)
CD: “Cançons líquides”
Autor: Carme Cuesta, Joan Sanmartí

A compilation of "liquid songs" born from the encounter of a voice and a guitar. Underlined by the right presence of a pair bass-battery, fluency appears, following the shapes of a jazz which springs up as an island near the beach. The texts alternate Catalan and Spanish: an identity with no complexes.

Duets 95/05
Jon Robles David Mengual: "Duets #3" (1.56)
CD: “Duets 95/05”
Autor: David Mengual, Jon Robles

A pause before takeoff. After ten years of different collaborations, Jon Robles and David Mengual choose to dream together. It is more of an onirical exploration than a dialogue, a confrontation or an exchange. Two great voices of Catalan scene, playing the parts of a couple. A fascinating album for its maturity.

In a sentimental groove
Ignasi Terraza Trio: "El cant dels ocells" (4.02)
CD: “In a sentimental groove”
Autor: Traditional

Totally open, almost extrovert, anyway moved by a huge jazz love, the music of this barcelonian refuses the post-modern attitude that usually plays "about" the trio. With Pierre Boussaguet and Jean-Pierre Derouard, Ignasi Terraza extends Oscar Peterson and Hank Jones' heritage. The class of great classics.

Five in Orbit
Five in orbit: "Jungle soul" (5.48)
CD: “Five in Orbit”
Autor: Gene Ammons

Barcelona-sur-Seine. It's in Paris, where he lives, that the Catalan trombonist Ramon Fossati grows musically. He does so in the heart of this quintet devoted to a mingusian swing, fizzy, expressionist, but in no way anchored in the past. With Olivier Brandily, Laurent Bronner, David Salesse and Patrick Filleul, this is an invitation to trance.

Altres cançons a Mahalta
Xavier Monge Trio & Carme Canela: "Cançó a Mahalta" (4.22)
CD: “Altres cançons a Mahalta”
Autor: Xavier Monge, Màrius Torres

Música de cambra i altres poemes. The title of the most popular anthology of the Catalan poet Màrius Torres would have suited perfectly the fourteen texts within this work. Carme Canela sings them with a voice full of delicacy and Xavier Monge's piano embroiders them with rhythm.

Mirage: "Cash Waltz" (4.42)
CD: “Mirage”
Autor: Ismael Dueñas

Third opus for this pianist from Badalona. Now, with Marc Cuevas and Oscar Domènech, he has found a perfect echo for his natural lyrism. An inclination for singing, a scenification of melody. With a sense for articulation that always generates the most beautiful dynamics.

Dani Rambla: "Simitrius" (5.39)
CD: “Simitrius”
Autor: Dani Rambla

Straight-ahead. This quintet with two saxos reunited by the pianist inscribes itself in lines with the sincere jazz that characterized the best times of hard-bop. Without any complex, the rythymic section lays some foundations that would challenge any earthquake. Dani Rambla, Martí Serra and Guim G. Balasch can fly up to the clouds, but always land on foot.

Ximo Tebar & Fourlights: "Inner urge" (3.38)
CD: “Eclipse”
Autor: Joe Henderson

In the 90s, this guitarrist earned a reputation as the best pupil in class. His capacity to articulate the improvisations in an implacable way is always successful. Notably in this group, where he's up to his great guests from the other side of the Atlantic, and in this "post-fussion" context in which he overcomes all the rythymic complexities with the easiness of evidence.

Montoliu plays Tete
Tete Montoliu: "Jo vull que m'acariciïs" (1.51)
CD: “Montoliu plays Tete”
Autor: Tete Montoliu

The mentor's figure. Well-assumed roots. The language of jazz as oxygen. A life for jazz (1933-1997) devoted to accompanying the greatest American legends. To illuminating their trios and solos with the sense of brevity of bebop. And here, that rare capacity to say everthing in less than two minutes. A bright modernity.