UK’s MUSIQUE MACHINE, which has been very supportive of our label, just published this excellent review of HUGO COSTA & PHILIPP ERNSTING’s THE ART OF CRASHING album. Buy the album here.
“The Art Of Crashing servers up six slices of taut, tense, and often angularly seared improv for drums and alto Sax two-piece. It’s a release which sees the instruments at times swapping their formal roles, in both an intense and rewarding manner. The release appears on the always-worthy New Wave Of Jazz, which is an improv & modern composition label that is run by ambient experimental artist/improviser Dirk Serries. The CD release is presented in the labels house style min gatefold- which features on its outside grey boxes with white texts in, and inside a two page write up about the two players, and the tracks presented within. As with all of this labels releases- this CD is ltd, with it having a pressing of two hundred copies. And if you’d like to purchase it directly from the label head here Hugo Costa is an Alto Sax player from Rotterdam, and aside from another collab 2022’s Land Over Water. He is in three-piece project Albatre, who have put out five releases since 2013. And Anticlan- which is another three-piece, and has been active since 2018- releasing two releases. Philipp Ernsting is also based in Rotterdam, and handles the drums on the release- The Art Of Crashing is his first two-piece collaboration- though he’s also in the Albatre & Anticlan, as well as Ritual Habitual- a three-piece who have one release to their name 2021’s Pagan Chant. And from the beginning of this release, it’s clear both players are highly comfortable with each other. The six tracks featured have runtimes between one and sixteen minutes. And after the short intro/ warming up first track, we’re into “Twine Endangered” to begin with we find a tight and taut web of snaping ‘n’ rolling drums & rhythmic taps/ darts from the sax. As the track opens up the rhythmic darting tone of the Sax stays to an extent- but we get more honk, wailing waves and bays appearing- which is blended wonderfully with the detailed & taut drum work. As we move through the CD we come to “Nowhere Fast”, which is the longest track here. It opens with a blend of even tapping almost tribal drums, and playfully expressive Sax work. As the track moves on the Sax almost starts to twist off in more abstract and busy tangents, and around this the once fairly formal drum pattern, adds in a complex cymbal and drum patterns- all to create a wonderful urgent and brain cell-sparking track. The CD plays out with “Drink It Now” which begins with angular and waving compressed horn work- and rapidly snaking & darting drum work. As things move on the Sax starts taking on slightly more flighty at points harmonic touches in its flirting and bob flow, and this is wonderful added to by shift and detailed drum patterns. The Art Of Crashing is excellent and impactful improv album- with both parties rewardingly shifting, weaving, and darting around each other. I’ll most certainly be keeping an eye out for both player’s names in the future- as well as looking into the other two projects the pair are in together.”
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