I‘m dipping into that huge well that is Polish Jazz. After listening to “Bialy Garbus” it’s not hard to understand why. Bass-player and hard rock session man extraordinaire, Krzysztof Ścierański takes machines that can bend sonic time and space — the Ibanez HD1000 Delay/Harmonizer and Roland Echo/Chorus— and discovers that there are ways out of Jaco Pastorius-doldrums, into musical realms that are relatively uncharted. On his self-titled sophomore album for Savitor, Krzysztof’s groove explorations traverse through some gorgeous meanderings that go beyond mere jazz.
Hyper-technical as Krzysztof Ścierański may be, there are moments when Krzysztof just drops technique into feeling, and you into vast expanses of beautiful, languid bass tone that’s been pitch-shifted, echoed, and sculpted into unique overtones that make it this whole other, new thing. It’s the kind of musical stuff that makes you question how much really this is jazz. At the very least, it might threaten to your bias towards slap bass. I mean, when it’s tastefully used sparingly for something, like this unclassifiable bit of musical fusion, it can’t be all that bad?
Vacillating between the school of airy, ambient, ECM-style jazz, funky New Age, and new-school drone/ambient, Krzysztof Ścierański uses the bare minimum of orchestration to present something that sounds fuller than it should. Simply accompanied by drummer Marek Surzyn – with no electronic synthesizer of any sort – Krzysztof Ścierański wisely tweaks and affects his sparse, musical parts until they compress, and decompress, sounding like a multitude of imagined, other instruments.
When the strident, marauding music of “Zolta Strzala”, winds through the dark tropics of “Maracuja” and ends in the swervy dance of “Zwracanie Basu”, you can sense this is Krzysztof in full flight. My suggestion: keep your eyes closed and feel your way through this groove…