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LexGo Critic's Pick: Avishai Cohen's "Into The Silence"

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Thursday March 17, 2016

From kentucky.com

Critic’s Pick: Avishai Cohen, ‘Into the Silence’
By Walter Tunis

“It’s perhaps an inevitability for a versed jazz trumpet player to draw comparisons to Miles Davis. You try to avoid the parallels, yet there they are. So when Avishai Cohen opens his sublime new Into the Silence album with a slow, plaintive serenade on the muted horn over a hushed, brushed backdrop of after-hours blues, the reference that emerges full blown is Miles at the height of his Kind of Blue period.

But Cohen is no jazz imitation. The tune in question, Into the Silence’s opening Life and Death, opens out into a meditation. The lusciously understated and gloriously unhurried tone will recall Miles time and time again. But as the tune reveals a subtle yet robust spaciousness, the sound that initially seemed so familiar takes on almost prayerlike qualities, especially in the way it interacts with pianist Yonathan Avishai, a friend and musical colleague of Cohen for decades. The dissonance of his piano colors prove an invaluable foil throughout Into the Silence, creating contemplative chatter that adheres to the kind of relaxed, reflective spirit that sits at the heart of the album. But it also upholds the striking ambience that defines the sound of ECM Records, the longstanding European label that now serves as Cohen’s recording home. Into the Silence marks his first recording for the label under his own name, having debuted with ECM on saxophonist’s Mark Turner’s fine quartet record Lathe of Heaven in 2014.”

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