Karlis Auzins - saxophones
Lucas Leidinger - piano
Tomo Jacobson - doublebass
Thomas Sauerborn - drums
Live in Berlin released in 2019 by GLIO
Mount Meander released in 2016 by Cleanfeed
Confirming that jazz is an universal language, here is a trans-national quartet featuring musicians from Germany, Latvia and Poland, in the two last cases living in Copenhagen. If you don’t recognize the names of these four representatives of a new generation of European musicians, namely Karlis Auzins, Lucas Leidinger, Tomo Jacobson and Thomas Sauerborn, certainly you’ll know some of those with whom they already established exciting partnerships: John Tchicai, Mat Maneri, Lotte Anker, Andrew D’Angelo, Adam Rudolph, Randy Peterson, Kresten Osgood, Sidsel Endresen and Frank Gratkowski. This gives you an idea of what to expect: music with an attitude, and the attitude is to function as one organism. Not a simple gathering of four individuals, but a complete being committed to intuitive and collective free improvisation. Does it mean this is non-idiomatic improvised music, to use the label invented by Derek Bailey? Not quite: the band Mount Meander uses musical idioms to tear down the borders between jazz, the avant-garde, world music, rock and pop, and precisely because this CD isn’t about genres. It’s all about unity, equality, trust and communication. Are you ready for them?
- Pedro Costa
“This quartet shows us that there need not be a compromise when it comes to jazz that is both bold and enjoyable to listen to. Here, stunning melodies go hand-in-hand with restless experimentation, and the end-result is music that is endlessly alluring.”
4/5 stars (Derek Stone - Free Jazz Blog - USA)
"[With] the band’s second CD (...) the quartet members now travel firmly on their own route with no meandering. (...) Avant-garde to some, modern mainstream to others, Live in Berlin helps define what cooperation can achieve. Maybe hyperbolic politicians should start taking tips from Jazz musicians."
(Ken Waxman - Jazz Word - USA)
"Layered and lush, with indistinct outlines or boundaries."
(Tom Greenland - New York City Jazz Record #10, 2019 - USA)
"Definitely one of the best European Avant-Garde Jazz albums that landed on my desk so far in 2019"
(Adam Baruch - The Soundtrack of my Life - Poland)
Listen on Top 10 Best Albums of 2019
(Tomasz Gregorczyk - Rozmowy Improwizowane - Polish Radio II - Poland)
"No transcriptions for this one!"
(George W. Harris - Jazz Weekly - USA)
Among Avant Music News Picks of the Week : Feb 21, 2019;
Listed in the 'Excellent Releases of the First Half of 2019'
(Avant Music News - USA)
'Tune of the day' : Feb 8, 2019
(Dave Foxal - a Jazz Noise - USA)
"The musicians are improvising just fantastic – the music is filled with brightness, drive, expressions and innovative musical decisions."
(Avant Scena - USA)
"Avant-garde jazz radiates as the guiding star over a fine-woven network of jazz, world, rock and pop."
(Niels Overgård - Jazz Nyt - Denmark)
“What distinguishes this music the most is the level of communication and cooperation among the musicians. This is a truly leader-less band, a collective endeavor, a homo sapiens project. This is not necessary a unrestrained conversation, nor free ideas exchange or some kind of “mystical” musical bond in making. “Mount Meander” more about human sensibilities, creative process, and this special moments when music transcends the genres, and art surpasses your own limitations. A truly memorable project. Strongly recommended.”
(Cezary Lerski - Polish Jazz Net - Poland/Canada)
“While it might seem that there is a production line for outfits hailing from Scandinavia, Mount Meander demonstrates that the output is far from standardised.”
3.5/4 stars (John Sharpe - All About Jazz - UK)
Mount Meander - Thrill
Mount Meander - Sunsail, Pt. 3
Mount Meander - Sunsail, Pt. 1
photo © Peer Kugler