TOMAS SAUTER TRANCEACTIVITY
electro power jazz
Tomas Sauter - g, loops
Urban Lienert - b
Christoph Staudenmann - dr
Findling – revelation of the year
And there suddenly appears before us, out of nowhere – like a Tarkowski futuristic movie – this “Findling”, year of manufacture 2011. Tomas Sauter, guitarist and composer, has created a landmark, an erratic, with this overwhelming CD: unchanging yet full of fluid and ethereal inspiration, so that the music, from the very first note, shatters the usual esthetic dimensions. “Findling” is no vestige from an extinct past, but rather a revelation of contemporary creativity. In his trio Tomas Sauter “Tranceactivity”, with Christoph Staudenmann on drums and Urban Lienert on bass, Tomas Sauter shows admirable ingenuity, feeling and knowledge, intuition and intelligence.
Versatility at the highest level
Tomas Sauter has appeared in a wide variety of musical projects over the last few years. Whether in a chamber music duet, trio or quartet in totally different contexts, we have always experienced Tomas Sauter as an inventive composer and exciting instrumentalist. He has internalized Villa Lobos, Hendrix, Metheny, Frisell and Scofield and studied with Abercrombie. His wide-ranging works prove that he who stands on the shoulders of giants can see further than the average. Tomas Sauter does not go with the flow, he molds it. In his hands, distortion pedals, ring modulators, wah-wah and bit crusher are transformed from pure noise sources to an esthetic approach – and our sound alchemist goes even further, he gets special effect devices made to measure for him according to his own plans.
On the experimental journey from the Precambrian era into the 21st century, low level passages, trashy Lo-Fi grooves, mutant clusters, booming distortion orgies pass by and cast their spell. Vertically layered loops, antagonistic rhythmical patterns and odd meters propel the music into an orchestral dimension. “Tranceactivity” sounds ancient and urban, baroque and sober, spiritual and groovy, timeless and modern all at once – and develops irresistible seduction.
High tension between ecstasy and contemplation
Very few bands can hold the balance between ecstasy and contemplation, and make up their minds for one side or the other. To tempt fate, to create the instant and then let it become their musical identity, is true art in jazz. In such passages one hears that the trio, who have long been enjoying cult status in Switzerland, have managed to create a unique sound universe in their fifteen years together.
Independently from the musical surrounding, Staudenmann beats out the most complex rhythms in an astoundingly obvious way and distinguishes himself as a sensitive sound craftsman, working with a select choice of gongs and cymbals. Lienert creates an earthquake-resistant foundation with a growling electro-bass and shifts the epicenter within the triangle with his subtle use of electronics. As a team, Tomas Sauter “Tranceactivity” captivates with lively interplay and commanding sound experiments – one of the most innovative bands of the contemporary jazz scene.