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Anna Lundqvist Quintet: MEWE

Anna Lundqvist has been working as a professional singer/composer/arranger since the year 2000. She formed the Ana Lundqvist Quartet in 2005 and released a couple of albums: Borderline Fiesta (2009) and City (2010). In 2011 the band became a quintet and released Before You I (2012) and Ten (2015). In 2017 she released her fifth album titled MEWE.

Lundvquist presents us with quite a unique jazz offering. She uses her well trained and passionate voice as a colour palette to paint various textures and tones through her wordless vocals. Her voice has a very ‘60s/’70s quality, easy to listen to and very melodic. Her band are skilled musicians and include:

Fabian Kallerdahl (grand piano, keys)
Mattias Grönroos (double bass and electric bass)
Jon-Erik Björänge (drums and percussion)
Björn Almgren (tenor and soprano saxophone)

Fast piano and sax begin “Listen” an urgent and free flowing jazz piece. The vocals meander through the rolling soundscape, very lush and melodic, acting like a layer of instruments following her band mates as they lay down an intricate path. The music slows and a nice soprano sax solo unfolds before the drums get busy and the main melody picks up once again. With “Alone” there are lounge elements with minor keys and a nice piano solo and is much more mellower than the first track. A free form tenor sax solo highlights “Inspired” whereas the piano work of Kallerdahl permeates the beautifully flowing “My Joy”. “The Ravens” is more esoteric with unusual yet subtle rhythms and an unusual vocal arrangement. Another sax solo intermixed with slightly discordant piano lines offers the main highlight.

Really, this is far from typical jazz music so it might take a little time to fully absorb. The vocals make this especially unique. My only advice is to give this a listen and go from there.

File this under Swedish jazz.

Track Listing:
1. Listen
2. Alone
3. Inspired
4. My Joy
5. The Ravens
6. Behind It All
7. Insomnia
8. Everything Is Everything
9. Mewe
10. Without and Within
11. Beautiful Friend, the End

Added: May 15th 2018
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Artist's Official Site
Hits: 827
Language: english

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