The New York Second - "Music at Night"
Music at Night is a group assembled by Harald Walkate: a septet of both established and up-and-coming jazz musicians, including Teus Nobel and Mark Alban Lotz.
The "Music At Night" collection of essays by the English writer Aldous Huxley inspired the project. Nine compositions like stories, with plot lines, unexpected twists and different chapters, trying, in Huxley's words, to "express the inexpressible".
Harald Walkate extended his working group The New York Second (established 2015) to a septet, and invited trumpeter Teus Nobel to assemble the horn section and co-produce the eponymous album.
The repertoire consists of nine new original compositions that were arranged with the support of Florian Ross.
Of the music, pianist René van Helsdingen said, "It is music for a film that is not there but that I can see before me, it is constantly moving, it is Philip Glass and Steve Reich. The compositions are diverse, sometimes New Orleans, sometimes modern, sometimes I hear Beatles, sometimes cacophony. Yet it is unmistakably one concept, with strong melody lines and with ever increasing intensity and modal progressions that lend themselves perfectly to free improvisation."
Based on Huxley's "Music at Night" essays, the compositions reflect the night in their nature. At first they may seem quiet and sometimes still, but this night has no curfew - the stories are not bedtime stories, instead they leave you awake. Time and again, the peace is disturbed by agitation, horns entering into a provocative conversation with the melody of the piano, or coming into conflict with each other. Often the calm returns, but doubtfully, after these outbursts. Beneath moments of serenity and stillness, there is an undertone of tension that keeps you alert – knowing that something is about to happen...
The New York Second recorded two earlier CDs: Emergo (https://haraldwalkate.com/albums/emergo-the-new-york-second/) and Bay of Poets (https://haraldwalkate.com/albums/cd-bay-of-poets-the-new-york-second/).
AMSTERDAM (THE NETHERLANDS)
MARK ALBAN LOTZ