A year after his impressionistic, critically-lauded ECM debut Into The Silence, trumpeter Avishai Cohen s Cross My Palm With Silver introduces a program of new pieces which put the focus on the ensemble, on teamwork, with a quartet of the highest caliber. The adroit, almost telepathic interplay among the musicians allows Avishai Cohen to soar, making it clear why he is one of the most talked-about jazz musicians on the contemporary scene. All of these people together are my dream team , says the charismatic trumpeter of fellow players Yonathan Avishai, Barak Mori and Nasheet Waits, who share his sense for daring improvisation and his feeling for structure. I feel we're in a perfect place with the balance. It's open and there s so much room for the improvisation to take the music any place we can.
Avishai Cohen contributed all ten selections to Continuo, originals that are often influenced by Middle Eastern music. Cohen's bass dominates throughout, easily taking the most solo space. His trio with pianist Sam Barsh and drummer Mark Guilliana is tight, often being joined by Amos Hoffman on oud. The music is atmospheric, sometimes introspective, touched strongly by Western classical music and spontaneous in spots.
From the brooding opening title track to the closing Chet Baker homage, "I Fall in Love Too Easily," Dark Nights unapologetically embraces the heart of jazz. Every aspect of the album—from the cover photo, to Cohen's precise trumpet inflections, to the trio's dedication to immediacy and collective improvisation (and even the album's forays into electronic affects)—is saturated with the emblematic textures, rhythms, and imagery of jazz. This is achieved with professionalism, creativity, and skill, without a wit of irony or cliche, while avoiding both navel-gazing insularity and crowd-pleasing revivalism.
Avishai Cohen, who became well known in the jazz world during his period with Chick Corea, is one of the top bassists in the world. His virtuosity and constant creativity in both a modern mainstream format and on funkier grooves seem effortless. As Is…Live at the Blue Note contains a CD (the first seven selections) and a DVD. "Smash," "Feediop," the ballad "Remembering" and an overlong "Caravan" (the one non-original) are featured in both formats while three songs are different.
From Darkness sees the Israeli composer, bassist and singer go back to the very core of his musical idiom and activity, but with Avishai, what may seem as a return to the basics always brings the promise of a new beginning. From Darkness once again opens an essential gateway into a new creative and expressive dimension. “It is the first time since Gently Disturbed that I have the feeling I am reaching a new, fresh and incredibly substantial form with the trio.” A belief reinforced by two outstanding partners, pianist Nitai Hershkovits and drummer Daniel Dor.
Trumpeter/composer Avishai Cohen is a forward-thinking musician who has performed in various ensembles mixing avant-garde jazz, post-bop, klezmer, rock, and world music since the '90s…
"The first time I heard Nitai, it was in a little cafe in downtown Tel Aviv, Nico, in my neighbourhood." Avishai Cohen literally fell for Nitai Hershkovits : barely 20 and despite a cheapo keyboard the youngster reminded him of Chick Corea and Danilo Perez, two illustrious peers the double bass player had been lucky enough to play with."Nitai just swings naturally, with gentle authority; I've rarely seen that with other young pianists. He has something ancient within, a spirit that shines right through the way he tackles standards. You have to know your classics inside out, and love them, to tease the wonder out of them : no point just going over the same old ground, you have to do your own take, make them part of you. Nitai brings a fresh touch, reminding me of Brad Melhdau, without actually making any comparison. He has the same intent of making each song his own.
Although tenor sax/bass/drums trio recordings have been plentiful for decades, a trumpeter plus bass and drums has been an infrequent combination on record. The young Israeli Avishai Cohen is up to the challenge, accompanied by bassist Omer Avital and drummer Nasheet Watts. Cohen's interpretation of Don Cherry's "Art Deco" is playful and lighthearted, while his expressive muted horn in the slow, slinky take of Duke Ellington's oft-recorded "Mood Indigo" would have likely made its composer smile.