I've expressed my appreciation of Rafal Mazur's playing a couple of times lately (as he has played in Bomba on the occasion of both previous concerts) so let me just say that he was his usual great - deep sound, blurried lines, focused and attentively listening, never forcing himself on the front, comfortable at providing background that would put the spotlight on his partner, though not afraid to introduce new , surprising suggestions and slighly changing the direction of the music.
The collaboration with Keir Neuringer, once a student in Krakow, started in 1999 and lasted and developed through years, resulting last year in their first cd ("Unison Lines" on Not Two). I thoroughly enjoed the music on the cd so I was looking forward to this evening which was to be the first time I'd see Keir on stage.
Nonetheless my high expectation I was still mightily surprised as the duo hit the stage and created three extended improvisations, with skillfully created narration and sense of development, in front of the appreciative audience. Keir was clearly leading the way and his saxophone skills are simply impressive. He'd move freely between slightly twisted jazz phrases, ayleresque sound eruptions, hypnotic spirals, circles and labirynths of sounds. Playing with evident passion and wide (and wild) immagination he would bent his body and contort the way he would bent the sounds and timbres (muting the alto as presented on the photo was just one of the extended techniques he used). He would make the alto breath, sing, cry or roar. In the 2nd set (and the third improvised pieces, 30+ minutes or so) he exhibited a circular breathing technique that was simply stunning, running through scales, making simple chords (I thought about Bach) shimmer with additional colors (I thought of Phillip Glass's slightly ever-changing chords flowing, only Keir would sound like two saxophones playing at once, at double speed - and he adds simultaneous whispers on top of that! ). Hypnotic, absolutelty mesmerizing, fabulous performance.
Rafal Mazur - acoustic bass guitar
Keir Neuringer - alto sax
Klub Bomba, Krakow. 28.04