Yves Robert – In Touch (2002)

Yves Robert - In Touch (2002)
Artist: Yves Robert
Album: In Touch
Label: ECM Records
Year Of Release: 2002
Quality: FLAC (tracks+.cue)

Tracklist:
1. In Touch (00:57)
2. Let’s Lay Down (05:29)
3. La Tendresse (16:44)
4. In Touch Var. I (01:26)
5. L’air D’y Toucher (10:48)
6. Basculement Du Désir (08:59)
7. L’Attente Reste (01:38)
8. In Touch Var. II (02:26)

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Personnel:
Yves Robert: trombone
Vincent Courtois: violoncello
Cyril Atef: drums

Yves Robert’s album celebrates the sheer sensuality of sound throughout “48 minutes of tenderness”. ‘In touch’ is his third appearance on ECM but his first as a leader for the label, following recordings with Louis Sclavis and Heiner Goebbels. The Robert-Courtois-Atef trio he leads here is frequently heard, and much acclaimed, on the European festival and club circuit.

Yves Robert is widely acknowledged as France’s premier jazz trombonist, but ‘In Touch’ is not an album of clever jazz licks or virtuosic display. Yves’ subtle compositions and the group’s improvisations delight in the grain of the sound, in dialogues and exchanges and shared creativity, in working together to make the music catch fire. It burns with a slow, sultry intensity.

It is unmistakably “European” music – Robert thinks of it as “chamber music” – though it draws from diverse sources, testifying to the players’ individual backgrounds and experience. The gestures and textures of free playing are only part of the story. There is also melodic strength, a melancholic lyricism, and many stressed and broken rhythms. Hints of what Robert calls “imaginary baroque music” rub shoulders with echoes of the blues and jazz traditions; the written and the free blur into each other.

Drummer Cyril Atef represents a mix of traditions by himself: half-Iranian, half-French, he was born in Berlin and spent ten years in Los Angeles before arriving in Paris at the age of 22. He has much experience of playing “roots music” and popular music in contexts including reggae with Aswad, rai with Cheb Mami, and “ambient trans-world dancefloor” music with Bumcello.

Vincent Courtois has extended the possibilities of the cello in jazz in his flamboyant work with Louis Sclavis in particular. And Yves Robert has worked with all of France’s leading jazz musicians and with international improvisers and/or composers ranging from Heiner Goebbels to Steve Lacy, from Chris McGregor’s Brotherhood of Breath to Derek Bailey.

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