Rotem Sivan's album 'Enhanced Sun'

- a review

‘Enhanced Sun’ album by Rotem Sivan on Steeplechase Records, Denmark

This is a new jazz guitarist from Haifa, Israel who has relocated to New York, who sounds rather versatile, with the nine numbers on this album ranging from soft and dreamy ballad-like pieces to uppity to Bluesy up-tempo numbers like Rodent Blues (track 3). As a jazz composer, he seems to exude fresh new energy and a sustained vigor.

What impresses the casual listener and the finicky old-timer both is his mellifluous sound and consistent fluency, especially in longer passages wherein high quality improvisation bubbling with creatively intuitive sections holding sway over a simple bass and solid support from drums, to some very introspective soliloquies.

There can be no denying that his pleasant guitar sounds seem to have been derived much from ethnic musical forms of Israel to the classical music repertoire. He was a prize-winner at the Montreux Jazz Festival 2009 and, in the summer of 2010, was invited to perform at the Bern Jazz Festival, playing along with the likes of McCoy Tyner Quartet. On the whole he seems like a bright new performer whose jazz guitar playing would mature into more robust idioms now that he is living and working in New York.

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