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4.00 out of 5 based on 1 customer rating
(5 customer reviews)


Pedro Melo Alves

Aubrey Johnson  voice | Beatriz Nunes  voice | Mariana Dionísio  voice | Eve Risser  piano | Mark Dresser  contrabass | Abdul Moimême  electric guitar and objects | Pedro Melo Alves  drums and percussion

Available on Amazon and Itunes

Commissioned by the Portuguese Jazz no Parque series (Serralves Foundation, with Rui Eduardo Paes as the curator) in 2019, In Igma, the ensemble, and the opus now released, is a particularly accomplished example of the equating mind of drummer/percussionist and composer Pedro Melo Alves, who is more and more known for assembling musicians you don’t expect to see together and with them to conceive something that comes from very different musical sources. Besides Melo Alves himself, the instrumentalists are Mark Dresser, Eve Risser and Abdul Moimême and there’s three singers in (inter)action,Aubrey Johnson, Beatriz Nunes and Mariana Dionísio. The resulting music emanates from the interstices between jazz, contemporary music and experimentalism, in the process becoming this beautiful and quite intriguing object, described as a «quest for what is most primary and prior” and an «exploration of fresh influences, coming naturally from a broad aesthetic horizon».

All compositions by Pedro Melo Alves

Recorded by João P. Miranda, at Salão Brazil, Coimbra, on the 10th and 11th of July, 2019 | Mixed by Abdul Moimême and Pedro Melo Alves | Mastered by Miguel Marques (Arda Recording Co.)
Produced by Pedro Melo Alves | Executive production by Pedro Costa for Trem Azul | Design by Travassos | Photo by MIPA (Francisco Costeira da Rocha)

5 reviews for IN IGMA

  1. Madalena

  2. Gonçalo Falcão

    The music recorded on this disc results from a commission made by Serralves Foundation. The female voice dominates the music and often transports us out of the territories of jazz and to contemporary composers: sibilated “s” Lachenmann style, invocations of Berio’s “Sequenza 3”, the repetitions of Meredith Monk and Phillip Glass, “1898” Mauricio Kagel’s piece for choir of untrained children.
    Three female voices in an ultraterrestrial chorus. They float on a rough beak of metals and stones. We do not understand whether the music voices blessedness or whether, on the contrary, it predicts a calamity. The beginning of the disc puts us in a strange place and the drums often collaborate in this movement through the use of “cinematic drums.

    The piano enters, the drum beat and the voices leave heaven and head down to earth. They seem to go crazy. Percussion accentuates the madness. A contrabass sounding like a cello tries to arrange the situation by giving it noble environment. The voice responds poorly to this call and the insanity seems to get worse. Scraped metals appear leading us to a descent accompanied by an obsessive double bass… Pedro Melo Alves is a drummer associated with jazz and this “In Igma” was edited by a jazz publisher. These are the clues that lead us to assume that part of the material is improvised, part defined by the drummer from the North of Portugal (which would not invalidate its presentation in the catalogs of Kairos, Montaigne or another publisher dedicated to contemporary composition – these areas often touch each others – and ECM, for example, has the “New Series” precisely for this reason). Here, too, we are between jazz and contemporary writing. The presence of the voice is one of the fundamental elements, as it is this human sound that shapes the path of music and the way in which interaction takes place.
    The instrumental group set up by Pedro Melo Alves for this project – which will establish a dialogue with the voices – could not be more promising. Eve Risser is at the piano, probably one of the most extraordinary and innovative voices on this instrument in recent years. His album “Après un Rêve” is one of the masterpieces I have heard in recent years on solo piano. Mark Dresser plays the double bass, Abdul Moimême the guitar and Pedro Melo Alves the drums. The interventions of all of them are excellent.
    Here is a special jazz record, with delicate music that always leaves the listener in an unstable, thin, unbalanced area, able to keep the music surprising using almost always the same sound elements. Jazz for the “a certain regard” section.

  3. Madalena

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