CD Review: Axel's Axiom - Uncommon Sense

Uncommon Sense is the debut album of the German born, now living in New York, composer/pianist Axel Schwintzer.

Schwintzer sextet Axel's Axiom is really an international jazz band, tenor sax Aki Nishiguchi from Japan, guitarrist Casper Gyldensoe from Denmark, drummer Marko Djordjevic from Serbia, bassist Evan Gregor from USA, alto sax Alex Terrier from France and of course pianist Alex Schwintzer from Germany. A true testament of jazz world appeal.

With enough complexity to keep the interest of the jazz listener, "Caveat", "No Brainer", yet very accesible to any ear, "Tout Compte Fait", Schwintzer music has an international flavor also. The first track "Leaps and bounds" is a jazz samba. "Vorfreude" and "Fast Track", also has a distinct brazilian flavor.

The band goes into a more traditional swing in "Pretty Ugly" and "Wishing well" while in "Second Guess" they venture into a more modern sound, kind of fusion with a tinged of smooth jazz.

All the members of the sextet have excellent moments throughout the album. Schwintzer improvisations are rich and detailed and always compounded of elegance and freshness. Nishiguchi gorgeous sound on tenor sax is only surpassed by his lyrically intense playing. Alex Terrier solos are equally intense yet poetic and refined. While Gyldensoe improvised with a perfect balance of surprise and coherence.

Aki Nishiguchi - tenor sax, Casper Gyldensoe - guitar, Marko Djordjevic - drums, Evan Gregor - bass, Alex Terrier - alto sax, Alex Schwintzer - piano

Leaps and bounds, Vorfreude, Pretty ugly, Second guess, Caveat, No brainer, Airborne, Wishing well, Tout compte fait, Fast track

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Wilbert Sostre