Reviews that mention Sébastien Boisseau

February 21, 2021


Vert émeraude
Yolk Records J 2077

A celebration and a triple busman’s holiday in the same package Vert émeraude not only marks the 20th anniversary of the founding of France’s Yolk label, but is the first time the label’s three founders have recorded as a trio under the collective name of Clover. Although all are part of Le Gros Cube ensemble, their individual experience is in other configurations: bassist Sébastien Boisseau in bands including ones with Tom Rainey; trombonist Jean-Louis Pommier with Orchestre National de Jazz and alto saxophonist/clarinetist Alban Darche with everyone from Tim Berne to Thomas De Pourquery. MORE

December 2, 2018

Hans Lüdemann Trans Europe Express

BMC CD 240

Even more assured in its newest recorded effort, the appropriately named eight-piece Trans Europe Express (TEE) has become a confident, vigorous and multi-faceted ensemble as it evolves. Part of the reason is the freedom in composition and improvisation encouraged by the leader, German pianist Hans Lüdemann. Case in point: Of Polyjazz’s 10 tracks, four were composed by the pianist; two were composed by French bassist Sébastien Boisseau; one by French violinist Théo Ceccaldi; one by French trombonist Yves Robert; one by German drummer Dejan Terzic and one by German saxophonist Silke Eberhard. The other two members are French saxophonist Alexandra Grimal and Finnish guitarist Kalle Kalima. MORE

May 17, 2018

Sophia Domancich Pentacle

En Hiver Comme Au Printemps
Sans Bruit sbr 023



Aspen 002

Not exactly in common usage outside of marching bands, the euphonium, like many other misfit instruments, is welcomed in the liberal atmosphere of improvised music. Yet because free sounds are interpreted in multiple ways, the euphonium which resembles a shrunken tuba but has a trombone-like timbre fulfils diverse ensemble functions. Veder’s Niels Van Heertum for instance uses the horn’s output to meld with others reductionist tones to create the holistic landscape that is Evergreen. On En Hiver Comme Au Printemps in contrast, Michel Marre, who elsewhere plays trumpet or tuba uses the euphonium to take the place of a trombone in pianist Sophia Domancich’s Pentacle quintet. MORE

December 11, 2014

Hans Lüdemann

Die Kunst des Trio 1-5
BMC Records BMC CD 196

Peter Kowald


Jazz Werksttatt JW 150

Taylor Ho Bynum 7-Tett

Navigation (Possibly Abstracts XI & XIII)

Firehouse 12 FH-12-04-01-019

Flat Earth Society


Igloo IGL 257

Something In The Air: Outstanding and Unusual Boxed Sets

By Ken Waxman

As the availability of music on different media continues to proliferate, the focus of the durable box set has become equally diverse. No longer does a multi-disc collection have to be definitive or far-ranging. As a matter of fact some of the best, like the ones discussed here, concentrate on certain sequences in an artist’s career. MORE

December 1, 2014

John Hollenbeck/Alban Darche/Sébastien Boissau/Samuel Blaser

Yolk Music J2059


Willisau & Berlin

Intakt Records 231 CD

Co-operation and self-expression are the watchwords of these trombone-reeds quartets as each works out a program that swings unabashedly while making room for dexterous arrangement and free-form soloing. A retrofit of an existing trio, the all-German Squakk adds the acknowledged skills of Rudi Mahall on clarinet and bass clarinet plus his recorded debut as a baritone saxophonist to a band consisting of trombonist Christof Thewes, bassist Jan Roder and drummer Michael Griener. A more international affair, JASS consists of French musicians, tenor saxophonist Alban Darche and bassist Sébastien Boisseau, plus two Berlin-based expats: American percussionist John Hollenbeck and Swiss trombonist Samuel Blaser. MORE

August 16, 2014

Alban Darche

Pepin & Plume Records P&P 001

Polar opposite of the whey-faced, hushed and grim improv session, saxophonist Alban Darche and the members of his nine-piece L’OrphiCube band go out of their way to make the eight selections here playful and animated. Unfortunately frolicsome sounds can become frivolous if taken to the extreme. And while some tracks live up to Darche’s concept of creating foretastes of an imaginary film soundtrack, others get awfully close to frivolous background music.

Darche’s background includes collaborations with singers, choreographer and directors as well as jazzers such as guitarist Marc Ducret and trumpeter Kenny Wheeler. But here at least, his greatest challenge is evidently keeping his pop sensibility under control. The final “Abécédaire”, with its harmonized vocals, for instance, bears an unfortunate resemblance to a Christmas round sung by a children’s choir. Excessively high pitches are heard from the strings; plus Christophe Lavergne’s concluding drum solo, which seems to have wandered off of a Gene Krupa disc, doesn’t help either. Descriptively titled, “Miramas Reggae” which links the Jamaican music style with France’s Bouches-du-Rhône department, suffers from similar misdirection. Sort of a Claude-Luter-Orchestra-meets-The-Wailers program, adding Rock-styled drumming to the melody advanced by Basque accordionist Didier Ithursarry doesn’t help either. Conversely it emphasizes the misdirected contrasts between one style and the other. Only some wide tongue flutters from some of the four saxophonists present add some oomph to the piece. MORE

August 1, 2014

Festival Report

Jazzdor-Strasbourg-Berlin 2014
By Ken Waxman

The KulturBrauerei’s music space Kesselhaus in East Berlin was a fitting site for the eighth annual Jazzdor-Strasbourg-Berlin (JSB) festival June 3-6. With jazz and improvised music’s universality now a given, a festival presenting mostly French jazz taking place in what had been one of Berlin’s oldest breweries, now repurposed from industrial to artistic use, doesn’t seem that much of a stretch.

Overall its all-inclusive musical theme was confirmed by the programming of JSB’s artistic director Philippe Ochem and his team, which already host Strasbourg’s annual Jazzdor festival. Over four nights, JSB presented musician from different parts of Germany, Belgium and the US plus proudly delineated Basque and Corsican players, all of whom worked with improvisers from France’s major musical centres. MORE

June 16, 2003


Ear Mix
Sketch SKE 333031

Better-known as jazz educators, clinicians and studio musicians, trumpeter/flugelhornist Marvin Stamm and vibraphonist David Friedman prove that their improvising spirit is too strong to be snuffed out. EAR MIX also shows that superior mainstream jazz isn’t just the province of the young, or the elderly. It can also be made spectacularly by middle-aged to older stylists.

Americans Stamm, born in 1939 and a veteran of the Stan Kenton, George Gruntz and Thad Jones-Mel Lewis bands; and Friedman, born in 1944, whose vibes and marimba have been featured on discs by performers as different as Tim Buckley, Hubert Laws and Wayne Shorter; are joined by two Europeans of a similar vintage here. Swiss drummer Daniel Humair (born: 1938) has worked with everyone from Phil Woods to Anthony Braxton. French bassist Sébastien Boisseau, who also plays in Martial Solal Newdecaband, may be part of Humair’s Baby Boom combo, but his balding pate in the photo suggests he’s more boomer than baby. MORE