Home Music Kaylé Brecher: Bredux – Collected Edges

Kaylé Brecher: Bredux – Collected Edges

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Kaylé Brecher: Bredux - Collected Edges
Photograph courtesy of the artiste

Every time Kaylé Brecher steps out with a new album as leader – as she has with this one, Bredux Collected Edges, we are reminded that she has long since crossed the threshold of what may be considered as an auspicious artistic career. Miss Brecher may draw inspiration from the kind of vocalese invented by Eddie Jefferson [who, sadly, didn’t live long enough to see his invention sweep across the universe], and which has now refreshingly turned, in the hands of the great Sheila Jordan, into the story of Jazz from its evolution through Bebop, but she quite the original voice in the rather cluttered world of vocalastics.

Miss Brecher specialises in bending notes and sculpting phrases as if she were making the words and the phrases [themselves] pirouette and dance in the air of the studio or stage into which they’ve been expelled. For her – as for her mentors, there is no real rule – melodic or harmonic – which functions as a leap-off point for a song; only a strictly rhythmic one. Everything else develops organically as in the air that is expelled from the very lungs, from where it takes on the character of the story being told; and therefore becomes the smoke and mirrors of the narrative in which the characters play out their story in song. Her vocalastics ripple with cool and deliberate and eloquent imprecision weaving in and out of the accompaniments that inevitably seem to match her in the gentle, flickering lights in her voice.

As voices go, Miss Brecher’s is uncommonly elastic and seemingly not bound by conventional classes of register. But no matter what register she chooses to pitch her song in she is masterful in every aspect – of colour and tone, texture and the enunciation of the lyric. She digs into the meaning of words imputing the phrases that they make up with a very special grace. For instance, you might think that you “know” the song “Autumn Leaves”, but you will have never listened to an interpretation that she comes up with. Her love for spaciousness shines throughout. Case in point: “Choices”, a song where her accompaniments are also given free rein, albeit never to wander too far out of the widening circle that she alone defines.

This is a daring record because it blurs manmade boundaries that have become tiresomely defined by the uninspired. With Miss Brecher all this artificiality is thrown out the window as she shatters the confines of the prison of tradition. And on Bredux – Collected Edges she shares this experience with a cast of very impressive musicians, happy to follow her on this musical adventure.

Track list – 1: Wild Child; 2: So Complicated; 3: Under Paris Skies [a.k.a. Sous le ciel de Paris]; 4: Spy Music; 5: Cool; 6: Back to the Red Clay; 7: Autumn Leaves; 8: Choices; 9: Tunnels; 10: So It Goes; 11: Spy Music [alternate take]

Personnel – Kaylé Brecher: arrangements and vocals, and percussion [10]; Guitarists – Jeff Lee Johnson: [4, 11], Ron Jennings: [4, 11], Frank Butery: electric guitar [1, 3, 6, 8, 9] and acoustic guitar [10]; Piano and keyboards – David Dzubinski: [3, 5 – 7, 10], Ron Jennings: [8, 9]; Bassists – Ratzo Harris: [1, 6], Darryl Hall: acoustic bass [9], David Blaetz: acoustic bass [8], Paul Klinefelter: acoustic bass [5, 7], Chico Huff: acoustic bass [3, 4, 11]; Drummers – Grant Calvin Weston: [1, 6], Erik Johnson: [4, 11], Mathew Ferguson: [8], Tony DeAngelis [3], Grant MacAvoy: [5, 9, 10]; Percussionists – Don Gibbs: [9], Edgardo Cintron: [3, 7, 10], Rick Lopez: [8]; Ron Kerber: soprano saxophone [2]; Tony Salicandro: alto saxophone [2]; Ben Schachter: tenor saxophone [2]; Bill Zaccagni: baritone saxophone [2]; Jimmy Parker: sousaphone [10]; Barry McCommon: bass trombone [10]; Stan Slotter: trumpet [10]; Charles Ventrello: saxophones and flute [8]; Todd Groves: piccolo [3]; Matt Cappy: trumpet [1]; John Swana: trumpet [9]

Released – 2021
Label – Penchant Four Music
Runtime – 1:10:33

Raul da Gama is a poet and essayist. He has published three collections of poetry, He studied at Trinity College of Music, London specialising in theory and piano, and he has a Masters in The Classics. He is an accomplished critic whose profound analysis is reinforced by his deep technical and historical understanding of music and literature.

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