6th September 2019
Worlds Collide in order to create brave new ones on Michael Janisch's highly enjoyable new album.
Following the breadth of 2015's live and post-processed electro-acoustic release 'Paradigm Shift', bassist Michael Janisch launches new project Worlds Collide with a band featuring saxophonist John O'Gallagher, trumpeter Jason Palmer, guitarist Rez Abbasi and drummer Clarence Penn.
Recorded in Abbey Road's legendary Studio 3, and engineered/mastered by Tyler McDiarmid, it also includes guest saxophonist George Crowley, keyboardist John Escreet and drummer/percussionist Andrew Bain.
Tirelessly active as solo artist, session player, composer, producer and record label owner, Janisch is one of the most preeminent bassists across the British, US and European scenes. Twofold title 'Worlds Collide' primarily speaks of the variety in Janisch's six engaging tracks - each is quite different to its neighbour. But he also sees it as analogous to what is going on in the wider world right now, especially the continual toxicity of social disclosure driven by tribalist views from differing positions on the political spectrum.
The tracks include the rock-driven strut of "Another London", with fundamental ostinato bass groove, guitar-and-synth vistas and lush horns, reflects Janisch's positive view of walking through this great city. It's a decidedly cool groove, interspersed with contemplation, featuring an epic alto arc from O'Gallagher. Rez Abbasi's mesmeric guitar figure maps out "An Ode to a Norwegian Strobe" (Janisch is a big fan of Strobes and Aphex Twin, as well as regularly performing with Norway's jazz star Marius Neset), and its sumptuous buoyancy is fully explored by the band to cinematic conclusion.
The technical and emotional wonder of 'Worlds Collide' was nailed in Clarence Penn's immediate, adrenalin-rushed quip to Michael Janisch, once the whole album was 'wrapped': "Congratulations on a great record - you're really gonna turn some heads with this!" What he was chiefly getting at is the simple truth that, right here, is a celebration of boundary-crossing contemporary jazz unfolding in all its captivating, artistic magnificence. Janisch has glimpsed a new horizon for himself and, with inimitable verve, is going for it.