Guitarist Ian Wardenski’s compositions make use of traditional elements while intertwining textural components that reveal an idiosyncratic, angular approach to both melody and rhythm. All this could be heard on his 2019 debut LP, Collective Thoughts, and now on his latest full-length project, Trust, released in March 2022. This latest album marks a continuation of Wardenski’s passionate research and exploration between scholarship and performance, which he also promotes in his work as a theorist and educator. The result calls for an active listening experience that is rewardingly immersive, as shown by Trust‘s opening track, “Before Long,” which you can listen to via the player below.
The music, here, is performed with a quintet, and combines the aesthetics of a chamber group with the freedom, spontaneity and improvisation of a small jazz combo. Soprano Tamara Tucker’s wordless vocals, engaging in the practice of voice used as a musical instrument, add a sense of otherworldliness to this and other selected compositions on Trust – including its captivating conclusive “Matching Energies Modulus” triptych.
Featured photo by MG Stewart.
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