Pentadox – Between (Self, 2018) ****
Pentadox is a quintet built around the trio of drummer Samuel Ber, Bram De Looze on piano, and Sylvain Debaisieux on tenor saxophone, all three younger than thirty. They are joined by Guillaume Orti on saxophone and Bo Van Der Werf on baritone saxophone. All five musicians also play gong. The music is a creative mixture of tightly composed and arranged moments, around which almost anything can happen, even if some core improvisational concepts are agreed upon. For such a young band, it’s amazing how comfortable they are with open space and silence. The individual musicians don’t feel the urge to be heard, they just to let the music run its inherent logic and course, resulting in a really refreshing sound, that is at times playful, at times disorienting, often open-textured but with very dense and intense moments of interplay. The quality of the pieces is consistently high throughout the album, and so is the band’s ability to keep playing within their own sound.
Not surprisingly, they won the Young Talent Award at the Ghent Jazz Festival. A band to watch!
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