Patrick Zimmerli – Phoenix (2005) [2.0 & 5.0]
PS3 Rip | ISO | SACD DST64 2.0 & 5.1 > 1-bit/2.8224 MHz | 64:03 minutes | Scans included | 3,18 GB
or FLAC 2.0 Stereo (converted with foobar2000 to tracks) 24bit/88,2 kHz | Scans included | 1,07 GB
Jazz / Experimental / Modern Creative | Features 2.0 Stereo and 5.0 multichannel surround sound
Usually, when jazz and electronica get together, it’s the former that ends up taking a back seat to the latter — a string bass sample lopes along underneath laid-back synth chords, or a saxophone tries to honk its way through a thicket of over-produced keyboards. Either way, the strategy is to take easy listening pap and give it a superficial gloss of hipness. The sixth album by saxophonist and composer Patrick Zimmerli takes just the opposite tack, and succeeds brilliantly. Instead of using disconnected jazz elements to spice up electronic Muzak, Zimmerli writes complex and beautiful jazz charts and spices them up with tasteful incursions of jittery, jungly breakbeats (courtesy of percussionist and programmer Satoshi Takeishi). His approach might sound gimmicky if it weren’t for the strength of his compositions, which manage to balance challenging formal complexity with intuitive, completely approachable beauty. He incorporates a string quartet into his arrangements in a way that brings to mind the more successful moments of Gunther Schuller’s third stream experimentation of the 1960s; his setting of the Jobim standard “How Insensitive” is one of the most intriguing and lovely ever recorded, and his own “Gnosis Crisis” combines cool strings with hot beats in a way that is both surprising and immediately attractive. Only the slightly bloated tone poem “Wunderlichen Stadt” (clocking in at over ten and a half minutes) fails to consistently hold one’s attention; everything else is a revelation. Very highly recommended.