“System Tribe” is both an impressive statement and a convincing document of Schultze’s original, futuristic compositions and interpretations. He has created music that both challenges and rewards the listener. Now Schultze amazingly transfers his award-winning creativity to his debut album as soloist.
Schultze’s comprehensive approach is completely individual. It is grounded in a healthy reaction to the information overkill of our time.
Every piece on the “System Tribe” is different. And yet, as the title implies, it all blends seamlessly into an exceptional unity. Schultze realizes this through traditional piano play, with prepared piano, with bubbling sounds from his Fender Rhodes, special microphone setups, and with a bit of overdubbing.
Schultze keeps to the point: emphatic, emotional, suggestive, remaining conscious of the structure, and with the listener in mind.
In so doing, he has created music that challenges and rewards, music that can be both melodiously contemplative and insistently minimalistic. Yet it also astounds, culminating in some sort of outrageous surrealistic rock music, on through to the machine-like alienation created by the sound distortions of the prepared piano.
It’s a question of contours, character, and nuance, an effective concurrence of tenderness and accelerated onslaughts, the balance from loud to soft, right on through to the CD’s finale, “Fade”, as a single chord plays repeatedly, it’s notes ringing out, then fading into silence before being struck yet again, on through to one final altered chord. This album demonstrates all that, as well as the benefits of the careful handling of particular fragments. There is something special that happens on the way from exposure to exploratory adaptation. With its precise logic, this surprising recording transforms the overwhelming within the core idea into the comprehensible.
2018 WhyPlayJazz (WPJ039) : Stefan Schultze Solo – “System Tribe “
Stefan Schultze (piano)
- System Tribe 4:24
- Silva 3:45
- Culture Vulture 2:36
- Return 3:22
- Fracking 5:13
- Rooftop 1:36
- Tong-Gu 3:30
- Fade 12:55
All compositions by Stefan Schultze. Produced by Stefan Schultze for WhyPlayJazz. Recorded April 1st 2016 by Lukas Lohner at Loft, Cologne, Germany & April 2nd – 3rd, Berlin, Germany. Mixed and mastered by Christian Heck at Tonartstudio, Horrem, Germany. Photo by Dovile Sermokas. Design and artwork by Travassos.
Full review soon on #jazzpress.gpoint