Jazz  Contemporary
Aki Takase Japanic Forte BMCCD331 CD
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FormatAudio CD
Ordering NumberBMCCD331
labelBMC Music
Release date19/04/2024
  • Bica, Carlos: double bass
  • Erdmann, Daniel: tenor and soprano saxophones
  • Narvesen, Dag Magnus: drums, percussion
  • Takase, Aki: piano
  • von Schlippenbach, Vincent: turntable
Guest musician
  • Wogram, Nils: trombone
  • von Schlippenbach, Alexander: piano

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      Description hide

      Aki Takase releases the second album with her main band, Japanic. On Forte, the leading figure of European improvisational jazz once again demonstrates her energetic, radiating nature, joined by her distinguished bandmates – Daniel Erdmann, Dag Magnus Narvesen, Carlos Bica and DJ Illvibe –, and two guest artists, Alexander von Schlippenbach and Nils Wogram.

      Aki Takase’s music not only sounds strong and powerful, but also conveys strength and power. And this presence, this power, also marks her as a person: she radiates positive energy – and this is needed today perhaps more than ever. For Aki Takase, the word “forte” contains something of a message: “Overcoming harsh reality and moving forward with music during this time – we wanted to give expression to a strong will.” The Japanese-born pianist, who has been living in Berlin for more than three decades, is a leading figure in the improvisational jazz scene in Europe and has won the German Record Critics’ Prize nine times in her long career, among many other awards. In five years, she has released three albums on BMC Records: Carmen Rhapsody, composed for Daniel Erdmann, Vincent Courtois and Mayumi Nakamura, the duo album Isn’t It Romantic with Daniel Erdmann, which won them both the German Jazz Award, and her debut album with Japanic, Thema Prima, hailed by the critics of Jazzwise, Citizenjazz and All About Jazz.

      Japanic is Aki Takase’s main channel of expression, an international band in every sense of the word. In the years since their debut album, only one member of the quintet has changed. Saxophonist Daniel Erdmann was a student of Takase, then he joined the pianist’s ensemble and they also maintain an improvisational dialogue. The Norwegian drummer Dag Magnus Narvesen is a member of the Kitchen Orchestra, leads his Damana octet and is a duo partner of Alexander von Schlippenbach. Berlinbased Portuguese bassist Carlos Bica joined Japanic in 2023, succeeding Johannes Fink. He is best known for his collaboration with singer Maria Joao, with whom Takase created a series of original duets in the 1980s. Vincent von Schlippenbach – aka DJ Illvibe – is one of the most virtuosic masters of the turntable. Two of Takase’s long-time collaborators appear as guests on the album. Alexander von Schlippenbach is a pioneer of European free jazz, with whom she recorded a duet in 2023. The other guest soloist is trombonist Nils Wogram, who was Takase’s partner on one of her albums (Aki Takase Plays “Fats” Waller, Enja Records) reinterpreting the jazz tradition with a free spirit, love and humour.

      Tracklist hide

      CD 1
      • 1.Festa Magdalena09:11
      • 2.Step Skip Stop05:42
      • 3.An jeder Kreuzung liegt eine Erinnerung begraben04:03
      • 4.Ma non Troppo04:19
      • 5.I want to know sweet music01:31
      • 6.Japanic Macrokosmos06:45
      • 7.Alinamin Drink05:16
      • 8.Timeless Story08:34
      • 9.Woe the row of foes07:37
      • 10.I'm Confessin' (that I Love You)03:13
      • Total:56:11