Tue May 21, 2019

Chico Freeman & Heiri Känzig Duo (USA/CH)

Chico Freeman: tenor, soprano saxophone
Heiri Känzig: bass

Tunes drawn from silence seem to come to these two gentlemen just like that. With their introspective pac, avant-garde veteran Chico Freeman, an outstanding and passionate improviser, and Swiss top bassist Heiri Känzig, a man of strong grooves and with a penchant for everything melodic, come on stage here as advocates of a musical doctrine according to which less is often more. A lot of airiness and abundant intimate interaction fill the musical space.

Freeman, who emerged from the passionate and groundbreaking Chicago musicians collective AACM and advanced to cult saxophonist of the 1980s alongside musicians such as Jack DeJohnette, Elvin Jones, and his father Von Freeman, is nowadays more a man of gentle and rounded tones, a man who can also blow soap bubbles from his tenor saxophone and will play with such feeling that you can hear a tear drop in the rain. “To Hear a Tear Drop in the Rain” as is also a track on the double CD “The Arrival” (Intakt Records) which the congenial team will bring to the festival.

Känzig, who gained renown among others as part of Art Farmer’s quartet or alongside Charlie Mariano and Kenny Wheeler, is one of the most well-rounded European bassists who can make his instrument sing on occasion.

Chico Freeman and Heiri Känzig also inherently rely on musical economy – understatement being credo, performed by a duo who set aside the question of avant-garde versus tradition.