Hightailing cs441

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ainda que alguns improvisadores neguem que um dos principais parâmetros com que lidam nos seus projectos seja o idioma, tal acaba quase sempre (eu diria até que sempre) por acontecer. O interesse da música que resulta depende do que fazem a esse nível, e as matizes processuais e estéticas que os conduzem a esse fim não são contáveis pelos dedos das duas mãos. Podem ir dos cruzamentos explícitos de linguagens e respectivos léxicos como aqueles que identificam a Coax Orchestra a algo como o que ouvimos neste “Hightailing”, de uma banda sediada na Holanda, dirigida pelo saxofonista Ruben Verbruggen e contando com as participações do belga Bart Maris no trompete (sim, o mesmo dos X-Legged Sally, da Flat Earth Society e dos Deus) e do português Gonçalo Almeida (e sim, o dos Lama e dos Albatre) no contrabaixo. Se no caso do ensemble francês juntar bossa nova e noise passa por uma espécie de perversão, ou de subversão, do formalismo, já no dos Bulliphant trata-se de uma perspectiva historicista que nos vem comunicar que o património do jazz existe para ser (re)mexido, em contextos que, à partida, parecem nada ter que ver com ele, designadamente os introduzidos pela electrónica experimental de Thijs Trech.

Das geralmente lentas (enfim, nem sempre: há ocasiões em que o guisado ferve) ebulições do quinteto (cujo se completa com a bateria e a percussão de Friso van Wijck) emergem, como pedaços de carne vindos do fundo da panela, o bebop, o hard bop, o cool, o free jazz, o jazz-rock, e com uma indiferenciação tal que parecem surgir ao acaso. Só que, como há composições a circunscrever o que ao longo dos temas se improvisa, o acaso começou logo na escrita. Simplesmente, esses elementos idiomáticos estão à disposição, sendo apenas necessário tirá-los do saco. Ou seja, a relação da Coax Orchestra com o jazz, música moderna por condição, é pós-moderna, pois joga com a ironia, enquanto a dos Bulliphant é meta-moderna, tendo como estratégia o cinismo. Face a isto, a fusão dos Seventies e a colagem dos Nineties, mais aquilo que os acima referidos franceses mostraram no recente Jazz em Agosto com referência nesses dois modelos, mas já querendo ultrapassá-los, eram ainda abordagens infantis – a adulta está aqui. A maturidade ensina-nos que criar é trabalhar com a memória, mas duvidando desta, colocando-a em causa e dessacralizando-a. Rui Eduardo Paes (Jazz.pt)

Belgian jazz is not known for its avant-garde leanings, with the possible exception of pianist Fred Van Hove, clarinetist Joachim Badenhorst and bassist Peter Jacquemyn. Drummer Teun Verbruggen and guitarist Dirk Serries luckily start getting more exposure internationally. Music education is still very focused on technical skills, less so on creativity. Luckily that is changing and this band is a nice example of that. Bandleader Ruben Verbruggen plays alto and baritone sax, Bart Maris plays trumpet, Thijs Troch synth and electronics, with Gonçalo Almeida from Portugal on double bass, and Friso van Wijck from the Netherlands on drums and percussion. All twelve pieces on the album start with composed ingredients, opening up for structural improvisations, which reduces the average length of each track from one to five minutes. The pieces are all evocations of natural topics, as can be gathered from the album's title, itself a contraction of bull and elephant. More information we don't get, and in fact it doesn't matter. The music speaks for itself. The first track starts with abrupt playing between trumpet and drums, joined by the sax and the bass, as a kind of duo versus duo interaction, with little bleeps from the synth suddenly taking over completely, supported by the drums. The trumpet adds a few sudden bursts, and the piece is finished. Short, disorienting, strange. "Jungle Dew" starts with friendly flute-like multiphonics from the synth as an intro for a beautiful theme on the sax, with the trumpet in counterpoint adding depth, and the rhythm section hesitating to take their pace to a different level, but then deciding not to, leaving the floor to both horns to freely circle each other, until the flute-like synth repeats the intro. "Mud Puddle" is a short interaction between sax and bass, clocking at 44 seconds. It's over before you  start thinking about it. So is "Echolocation Error", just over one minute, with electronics and trumpet jokingly creating a bat's sorrowful journey at night (or so I guess). "Too Much Nectar" is luckily a little longer, offering the musicians the time to expand, even that concept remains quite restricted here. The first half of the composition is an almost unison single tone that's growing in volume and bifurcating into recognizable instruments, chattering and twittering as if drunk, then slowing down again into a shared quietness. "Long Distance Migration" offers again a beatiful theme, penned by Bart Maris, and it is also more intense, with changing perspectives, and the collective creation of a sonic structure with various levels interacting and diverging again. It is also the most 'jazzy' of all the tracks. It becomes fun again with "Male Combat", with the two horns playing in unison, then echoing each other, over the dark rumbling of the rhythm section, which takes over completely and the synth drives the music to insane levels, propulsed forward by mad percussion, moving seamlessly into "Female Reward", the next track, the chaos continues, then comes to a sudden grinding halt. The album ends with a long piece, one is that is very inviting and open-textured, led by trumpet and electronics. The overall result is fascinating. Despite Verbruggen's role as a leader, the sound is very collective, and the sax often leaves the lead voice to the trumpet. It's also fascinating because of the strange mixture between short ideas, compact delivery and humour in contrast with eery sounds and complex improvised interplay, while at the same time managing to maintain a strong musical coherence. Stef (The Free Jazz Collective)