Jakob Draminsky Hojmark

For the Birds

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Those who want to investigate Jakob Draminsky Hojmark on the count of his activities as sideman reedist for Pascal Comelade should definitely start here. For the Birds was recorded in late 2001, but it culls lively instrumental tunes written during the previous two decades for various film, theater, and group projects. Hojmark selected a nucleus of musicians from Barcelona for the recording session: trumpeter Mark Cunningham, bassist Eduard Altaba, percussionist Bob Shake, and drummer Quico Samsó. A cast of guests complete the instrumentation for each track, including accordionist Alfredo Costa Monteiro and Comelade himself (on toy piano in "Sometimes"). A decade spent playing with the latter leaves its marks. His fans will recognize something of his naïveté, playful melodies, and quirky arrangements. Hojmark adds a klezmer touch (clarinet oblige) and a dose of oddball electronics here and there. Highlights are numerous: the irresistible East-European-like party songs "Pouncing" and "Champs of Chambers," the ballad "Loved and Lost" featuring the stunningly powerful voice of Carmen Sánchez (on first listen you'll swear it's a singing saw), and a revisited "Car 'n Van," very different from the recording included on the 1995 CD At the Gallery. This album is thoroughly enjoyable and highly recommended to fans of creative instrumental music the likes of Comelade's.

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