Ruins and Remains
Ruins and Remains, a suite for piano, string quartet and percussion, was composed by Wolfert Breferode in 2018, to mark the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I. Over time, however, it has come to embody meanings broader and more personal, with wide-ranging resonances. “At a number of levels, the piece has to do with grief and loss and learning to stand up again,” Dutch pianist Brederode says. There is a vulnerable but resilient quality to the music, as it hovers over its emotional terrain, with moods both bleak and guardedly hopeful. Highly sensitive playing by Brederode, percussionist Joost Lijbaart and the Matangi Quartet (increasingly regarded as one of Holland’s most adventurous string quartets), distinguish a special album recorded in Bremen’s Sendesaal in August 2021 and produced by Manfred Eicher.
Black Ice is a nice image for Dutch pianist Wolfert Brederode’s new trio music, with its gleaming lyricism, transparency, and hint of danger, as well as sleek melodic invention both from the leader and from Icelandic bassist Gulli Gudmundsson. Brederode and Gudmundsson have collaborated often over the last two decades in contexts from free improvisation to theatre music and have a keenly honed intuitive understanding. Jasper van Hulten is a resourceful addition to the team, a tone-sensitive drummer adept at embellishing the sensitive musical language and sense of interplay. The album, recorded at Lugano’s Studio RSI in July 2015 and produced by Manfred Eicher, is issued as the Brederode Trio goes on tour in the Netherlands…
Second album from Dutch pianist Brederode and his international band, with clarinettist Puntin and drummer Rohrer from Switzerland, and Norwegian bassist Eilertsen. The music builds upon the achievements of 2006’s “Currents”, a recording that received high critical acclaim: “What is marvellous about this music [said All About Jazz] is that it combines a moody airiness with intellectual rigor. The romantic emotionality that paints beautiful images of sound has sinews of steel. It simultaneously invites the listener with its surface beauty, only to create bonds that hold on strongly as it weaves its spell.” Brederode’s is music that flows, drawing influences from both the jazz and the classical traditions. It suggests more than it states, and is the more powerful for its restraint.
The gentle pulsations of the piano of Wolfert Brederode (born 1974) have played a supportive role on the ECM recordings of Susanne Abbuehl. Now the Dutch keyboardist leads a pan-European group of similar gifted young players, who commit their improvisational energies to the lyric flow of his music. Mats Eilertsen, leading Norwegian bassist already heard on ECM discs with the Source, Parish and Jacob Young, has a pivotal role to play, mediating between percussionist Samuel Rohrer (also from Abbuehl’s band) and clarinettist Claudio Puntin, whose resumé has included work with artists from the Ensemble Modern to Fred Frith, and whose first ECM leader disc, “Ylir”, was issued in 2000.
Joost Lijbaart & Wolfert Brederode surprised the jazz world with their debut album One. Although both artists have been enjoying successful solo careers for years now, and developed into indispensable sidemen of Yuri Honing (Lijbaart) and Susanne Abbuehl (Brederode) no one could have suspected that their collaboration would yield such beautiful music. The fact that piano and drums isn't an easy and certainly not an everyday combination, makes their achievement even more impressive. Brederode's impressionistic piano playing and Lijbaart's inventive, intensely musical drums and percussion play converge into one hypnotizing soundscape. The renowned Dutch author P.F. Thomése, with whom the duo recorded an audio-book, wrote in the CD's liner-notes: "This is music that takes your breath away. And to, breathlessly, disappear into."