Masaa – Irade (2020)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/44,1 kHz | Time – 46:12 minutes | 496 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © Traumton
Almost three years have passed since the CD Outspoken was released, and a lot has happened since then. The tour for publication took the quartet to Tunisia, Azerbaijan and Izmir as well as from Spain to England across Western Europe. Enthusiastic reactions from the public and the media suggested that Masaa will continue to successfully pursue its path. “The music has an incredible flow, a sophisticated dramaturgy, is emotionally very intense and always impresses with a trumpet and flugelhorn sound that is hard to beat in terms of proximity and warmth,” stated NDR Info.
But then an unexpected break: Pianist Clemens Pötzsch left the perfectly recorded band in 2018. “After some consideration, we decided to continue with guitar instead of piano,” explains trumpeter Marcus Rust, “especially since we knew Reentko Dirks from our student days in Dresden.”
The change naturally brings changes in sound and aesthetics that Masaa knows how to use for himself. Rabih Lahoud’s vocal, reservedly decorated with arabesques is also in the center, characterizing his timbre, which is warm over several octaves, and his expressiveness up to high registers all Irade songs.
The subtle arrangements have also remained, the powerful dynamics of which sometimes break conventional chamber music frameworks. This is ensured not only by the enormous scope of Lahoud’s gravitational voice, but also by the extremely variable play by Rust and drummer Demian Kappenstein, unmistakably located in contemporary jazz. At her side, Reentko Dirks creates nuanced sounds that have not yet been heard at Masaa, thanks to his special acoustic guitar, from whose body two necks grow.
Irade means willpower and was early on as the title for the album. “The willpower of my heart sleeps when I don’t believe in it – for example, because someone told me I had no will, I had no strength, I couldn’t change anything,” explains Rabih Lahoud. »But as soon as I know that I have it all in my heart, my willpower awakens and I experience myself and my life anew. I can change things. «Born and raised in Lebanon in 1982 as a child of Catholic Maronites, Lahoud questioned the omnipresent demand there early on to have to choose a side. To this day, he has rebelled against black and white rules that he was confronted with not only in the Middle East, but also during his studies in Düsseldorf. All titles on Irade were written especially for the current constellation, as before the band designed the arrangements together. The new, precisely woven Masaa sound sounds even more lively and dynamic. It oscillates between intimacy and individual melody, dazzling twists and turns and surprising contrasts, changing tempos and grooves. More than ever, the quartet creates a consistently independent, incomparable tonal language that artistically combines in many ways what is often separated from others by imaginary barriers or real boundaries.
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