Marcus Bartelt, Martin Sasse – Still Here (2022)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/44,1 kHz | Time – 43:46 minutes | 425 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © JazzJazz
After their stunning duo album “Monk” from 2016, baritone saxophonist Marcus Bartelt and pianist Martin Sasse come together again and celebrate with “Still Here” in a unique way the continuation of their intimate, harmony-rich “Art of the Duo”. And again one missed nothing at all in view of this only at first sight meager instrumentation: Sometimes the seemingly symbiotically connected musicians breathe the grandeur of a whole orchestra, sometimes they prefer the fragile dialogue as equal masters of aesthetics and improvisation. No, nothing is missing, everything is in its right place here.Marcus Bartelt revels in the fund of pleasantly deep tones, lets them rise like sky lanterns, melodiously drunk, sometimes rough, sometimes undisguisedly clearly paying homage to the beauty of a composition. Martin Sasse reacts to Bartelt’s warm, full sound, often with similarly low notes of the left hand, while he pushes open windows into the brightness with his improvisations and at some point even senses wondrous sounds in the distance, bright like a glockenspiel made of Meissen porcelain.
With one exception, Marcus Bartelt’s own compositional sound pearls are strung together, connected by five fragments, as it were as bridges or promenades between the musical pictures of an exhibition. If one fragment sounds like a cheerful intermezzo, the next reminds of a classical impromptu for two instruments, before another announces the change from baritone saxophone to flute. Fragment IV, in turn, is the compositionally perfectly crafted atmospheric image of a film noir, in which a tough private detective strides through the night on wet asphalt.
As on Bartelt’s quartet album “At Ease”, the title track becomes the atmospheric center of the Gesamtkunstwerk: “Still Here” unfolds as an atmospheric, deeply reflective ballad in which the fragile, delicate melody becomes the starting point for a cautious, sensitive and allusive search for sound. A true piece for eternity.
It fits that the album ends with the only foreign composition, Duke Ellington’s classic “All Too Soon”. This is also a ballad to kneel down, carried by the breath of a melancholic farewell and at the same time by the impossibility of being able to part. “All too soon,” the (unheard) lyrics by Carl Sigman read. “We had to part / The moment you had touched my heart / And with you went my dream / All too soon…”
1-01. Marcus Bartelt – Fragment I (00:37)
1-02. Marcus Bartelt – C.F. (07:09)
1-03. Marcus Bartelt – Fragment II (00:15)
1-04. Marcus Bartelt – Tea for You (05:52)
1-05. Marcus Bartelt – Fragment III (01:17)
1-06. Marcus Bartelt – Still Here (05:46)
1-07. Marcus Bartelt – Fragment IV (01:07)
1-08. Marcus Bartelt – Silverback (04:42)
1-09. Marcus Bartelt – Frieda’s Song (06:08)
1-10. Marcus Bartelt – Fragment V (00:46)
1-11. Marcus Bartelt – With You (04:39)
1-12. Marcus Bartelt – All Too Soon (05:23)