Artist: Avishai Cohen
Release Date: 21st May 2012
"The first time I heard Nitai, it was in a little cafe in downtown Tel Aviv, Nico, in my neighbourhood." Avishai Cohen literally fell for Nitai Hershkovits : barely 20 and despite a cheapo keyboard the youngster reminded him of Chick Corea and Danilo Perez, two illustrious peers the double bass player had been lucky enough to play with."Nitai just swings naturally, with gentle authority; I've rarely seen that with other young pianists. He has something ancient within, a spirit that shines right through the way he tackles standards. You have to know your classics inside out, and love them, to tease the wonder out of them : no point just going over the same old ground, you have to do your own take, make them part of you. Nitai brings a fresh touch, reminding me of Brad Melhdau, without actually making any comparison. He has the same intent of making each song his own. He made me want to go back again to the story I thought was over."
That's how the duo came about, which he called Duende. It can be translated as spirit from Spanish, but it really refers to that baffling, uplifting feeling that Avishai Cohen really grooves to.
With the new millennium, the most sought-after sideman has been working non-stop as a leader, burning epoch-making albums. Starting with those cut in New York, like Lyla (The Night, in Hebrew), and Gently Disturbed, as the thundering trio's pinnacle; and the two latest on the Blue Note label, Aurora and Seven Seas recorded when he returned to Israel. Digging into a new groove, a kind of chamber classical jazz folk, these two albums broke with the past in a career that seemed to be written in the stars. Avishai Cohen dares to change his step with this record that favours a double bass-piano formula.
Released by: Blue Note/ EMI
Avishai Cohen: Bass / solo piano on #9
Nitai Hershkovits: Piano (except on #9)
Produced by Avishai Cohen
All tracks composed by Avishai Cohen except; Criss Cross by Thelonious S. Monk; Four Verses / Continuation by Nachum Hayman / Avishai Cohen; All Of You by Cole Porter and Central Park West by John Coltrane.
All tracks arranged by Avishai Cohen except; #2 by Avishai Cohen and Nitai Hershkovits; #5 by Nitai Hershkovits.
Recorded, mixed and mastered by Lars Nilsson at Nilento Studio, Goteborg, Sweden, in February and March 2012.
Assistant Engineer: Michael Dahlvid.
Studio Production Team: Jenny Nilsson and Joakim Nilsson. www.nilento.se
Published by Gadu Music & Sony / ATV Music Publishing PT, except #2 published by Bar Thel Music Corp, #3 published by NMC United Entertainment & Gadu Music & Sony / ATV Music Publishing PT, #5 published by Chappell Co Inc, #6 published by Jowcol Music
A & R: Nicolas Pflug
Photos: Yakis Kidron
Artwork: Jean-Louis Duralek
"Une musique d'une puissance insoupçonnée..."
translation: "A Music of an unsuspected power..."
Metro - June 2012
"le musician israëlien n'avait jamais fait prevue d'autant de générosité que sur cette conversation en tête à tête [...] avec son nouveau pianiste"
translation : "This Israeli musician has never evinced such a generosity as this intimate conversation with his new pianist."
So Jazz - May 2012
"It's up there with Cohen's very best"
Jazzwise - August 2012