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THIS WORLD is the stunning debut release from a brand new collaborative band formed by four of Australia’s most established and celebrated improvisers.
In December 2018 they gathered in the basement of a cosy inner-Sydney restaurant to play two sets of jazz standards for an intimate but enthusiastic crowd. It was Nock’s first gig after a six month break and the joy and vitality of his return to live performance was palpable. Despite having enjoyed established relationships with each other in a variety of formats, this marked their first performance as a quartet and the four-way chemistry was evident immediately.
Six months later they performed four consecutive shows in Sydney immediately followed by two days recording at Sony Studios with engineer Ross A’Hern. The result is THIS WORLD. The shared history and personal connection between them is present in every note.
Individually they have worked with some of the greatest musicians in the world: Coleman Hawkins, Pharoah Sanders, Hugh Masekala, Ian Moss, Yusef Lateef, Hermeto Pascoal, Charlie Haden, Michael Brecker and Don Walker. All four players have a strong sense of tradition and history but are equally known for having one foot firmly planted towards the future.
New Zealand born pianist/composer Mike Nock (ONZM) is one of the acknowledged masters of jazz in Australasia. Based in Sydney since 1986, having previously spent 25 years in the USA. He is a recipient of the Don Banks Music Award and an inductee of the Australian Jazz Bell Awards Hall of Fame. Mike has released a plethora of critically acclaimed albums under his own name on many international labels including his own label FWM.
Jonathan Zwartz (also originally from NZ) and Sydney native Hamish Stuart form one of Australia’s great musical partnerships. For 30 years they have run the Starfish Club together along Sydney’s eastern beaches and are the first-call rhythm section for a who’s-who of the Australian music industry and international touring acts. Their simpatico and hook-up is legendary. Zwartz' own albums regularly top best-seller lists and have won numerous awards including an ARIA, an AIR Award and a handful of Australian Jazz Bell Awards.
Melbourne saxophonist Julien Wilson has been awarded almost every major accolade in Australian jazz, including the National Jazz Award, The Freedman Fellowship for Jazz, an APRA/ AMCOS Art Music Award, and a “Bell” Award for Australian Jazz Musician of the Year. Since the mid-'90s he has maintained strong relationships with many Sydney musicians and regularly performs there.
"Overall, This World seems intent on evoking that very complexity – the delight and the ache – of living life in this world. With its laconic tempos and breezy tranquillity, it joins several other recent albums, such as Sam Anning’s Across a Field as Vast as One and Jonathan’s Zwartz’s The Remembering and Forgetting of Air, that point to a distinctly Australian approach to jazz. In striving for mood over pyrotechnics, these musicians have constructed a sound world out of simple melodies, clean lines, and subtle arrangements. In a nutshell, This World is a sublime album performed by a quartet of stellar improvisers. Enough said."
Des Cowley - Rhythms magazine
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