“Still waters run deep. A saying that certainly applies to Japanese pianist Atzko Kohashi’s beautifully crafted open pieces, with great attention to sound, color and atmosphere.”
Atzko Kohashi - piano
Frans van der Hoeven - double bass
Sebastiaan Kaptein - drums
Total time: 49:01
Original recording format PCM 96kHz.
All other formats are converted versions of the original.
"I often think that the night is more alive and more richly colored than the day"
- Vincent van Gogh
There is nothing so mysterious as sound. You can’t touch, see, taste, nor smell it. Yet music has the ability to stimulate all 5 senses; tonality creates temperature and color, while tempo and rhythm set the sound’s scent and taste. In the world of jazz, where improvisation is central, each of these elements are of vital importance to bring a performance to life.
On this album, masterfully recorded by Frans De Rond, you can hear the touch of the piano keys sinking in, the movement of the foot pedal, the strokes of the bass strings, the vibration of the cymbals, and even the breath of the musicians... thus you experience what we, the musicians felt the moment the music was created.
I hope that our music will let you experience your own set of imaginary vivid colors, sweet scents, delicious tastes and gentle touches.
Frans - Atzko - Sebastiaan
1. Icebreaker by A. Kohashi / F. vd Hoeven / S.Kaptein
We always start our concert with 'Icebreaker'– a free improvisation, we play off and interact to each other, the sound of the room and the audience. It helps us getting on the same wavelength, musicians and audience.
2. Smile by Charlie Chaplin
Charlie Chaplin composed 'Smile', the theme song of "Modern Times". We find the contrast of bittersweet lyrics and the bright melody so touching: "♫ Smile though your heart is aching. Smile even though it's breaking...". Although this song is originally in a major key, we changed the first half to minor in order to emphasize the song’s mixture of sorrow and joy. Also we left out a clear concept of time, letting the trio have a conversation in a timeless space.
3. Footprints by Wayne Shorter
Our trio, is formed as an equal partnership. We aim to create an ongoing conversation among the three of us. 'Footprints' is originally a minor blues in 6/4 time, but we decided to free up the form, center it around a pedal point in freewheeling 5/4 time now and then intercepted with the last 4 bars of the theme. You might notice the Japanese scales appearing every now and then adding a different flavor to this well-known tune.
4. Fran-Dance by Miles Davis
Miles Davis wrote Fran-Dance for his wife and muse, ballet dancer Frances Taylor. The tune is deceptively simple, yet so full of possibilities. I hope you can visualize Frances dancing free spirited in front of you.
5. Magnolia by A. Kohashi / F. vd Hoeven / S.Kaptein
In early spring pink and white magnolia beautifully blossoms in the meadows of the Netherlands. The flower has a Japanese sense of beauty. We based our improvisation on that image.
6. Gentle Piece by Kenny Wheeler
Kenny Wheeler’ 'Gentle Piece' has a feeling of serenity, maybe even a slight Zen flavor. If you listen carefully you might even hear us breathe.
7. E.S.P. by Wayne Shorter
Despite the trio’s different backgrounds (Dutch and Japanese), we share a borderless musical vision. Maybe because we all have a deep affinity for Wayne Shorter’s music.
8. Sweet Lies by A. Kohashi / F. vd Hoeven / S.Kaptein
Just as the title suggests, 'Sweet Lies' is a dusky and melancholic tune. We based our improvisation on the title, the spirit of the moment and the music in our hearts.
9. Quiet Now by Denny Zeitlin
Hush! Don’t speak, quiet now... The melody of the piano slowly rises out of the textures created by the cymbals and the deep sound of the bass.
10. Embraceable You by George Gershwin
'Embraceable' You is one of my favorite jazz standards. I always have Charlie Parker’s tone in mind when I play the song.
11. Lujon by Henry Mancini
'Lujon' also known as 'Slow Hot Wind', is one of Henry Mancini’s most popular songs.
This slow version was recorded late at night at the end of the session. The mood is melancholic.... imagine an empty bar where you can just barely see the remains of smoke in the darkness, as if a scene from an old sepia film.
The sounds of our instruments blends and creates a mysterious soundscape of ever changing colors.
Atzko Kohashi, Amsterdam, 2018
LIve in Japan
Recorded on March 10th 2014 by Frans de Rond at studio 2 in Muziekcentrum van Omroep, the Netherlands
Piano tuning technician: Charles Rademaker
Sebastiaan is playing Canopus drums
Atzko: Audix Schoeps MK5
Frans: Peluso P67
Sebastiaan: JZ V67 - overheads and Audio Technica AE2500 - bassdrum
Micpre's: RME Micstacy (Analog > MADI)
Microphone cables: Grimm Audio TPR
Master clock: Grimm Audio CC1
Mixing headphones: AKG 702 / Sennheiser HD800
Mixing speakers: TAD CE1
Mixing amplifier: Moon 760A
Catalog Number: SL-1029A