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First Choice - Piano Solo KKL Luzern by Irene Schweizer

Eminent Swiss pianist Irene Schweizer performed these heavily improvised works at a Lucerne - classical concert hall. Alternatively, Schweizer invokes the history of modern jazz piano via a decorous mind-trip that clearly won over the audience in attendance. The artist launches the gala with a nineteen-minute opus titled "First Choice," where she aligns a lyrically delectable ritornelle with polyrhythmic chord clusters, reverse angles and contrapuntal inflections. Most importantly, she sustains interest from beginning to end.

Schweizer’s vernacular encompasses stride, bop, R&B, and free-jazz amid the romantic side of Bill Evans. But her free-form endeavors are often commingled with plush, harmonic passages. She rarely ventures off into extended dialogues where cacophony rules the roost. Here, motifs evolve, disappear and reemerge into variable formations. On "Scratching at the KKL," she bends and strums the piano strings, all equating to an avant-garde muse, softened by a frolicsome string of events. Then with Monk’s "Oska T" Schweizer inventively sculptures a caricature of the offbeat rhythmic structure via emphatic block chords and a crawling pulse which segues into a shredding, deconstruction effort. Moreover, she skirts around the primary theme with liberal doses of improvisational elucidation to complement her fluidly rendered single note outbreaks. It’s all followed by an elongated and well-deserved ovation from the audience, which in effect, summarizes the euphoria and artistry she asserts throughout the entire set.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Irene Schweizer
  • CD Title: First Choice - Piano Solo KKL Luzern
  • Genre: Progressive
  • Year Released: 2006
  • Record Label: Intakt
  • Musicians: Irene Schweizer (piano)
  • Rating: Four Stars
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