Harmonious Thelonious - Apakapa

The Trilogy Tapes

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The spirit of latter-day Jazz fusion, American minimalist composition and the intoxicating sounds of the middle-East run through the veins of this latest Trilogy Tapes release by Dusseldorf-based wunderkind Harmonious Thelonious.

A side and title track Apakapa opens with a whirling flurry of musical exchanges between a modal, searching sax and a prevailing, heavily layered middle-Eastern melodic hook. A relentless, stepping chug keeps the energy sky-high throughout these intoxicating exchanges - first they play together in lock-step, then the sax escapes the harmonic contours of the rest of the track to embark on a free-form exploration of complex jazz harmonies that washes away the other harmonic elements of the track in a sudden side-step.

Comparatively, the other two tracks are a little more reserved, but this is in no way to their detriment. On the A2, lowbeat pulses to a Bristol-techno friendly off-beat pattern, spruced up with brief licks of sax and a persistent, vocal-esque hum. Final track Whirling, another stepping house-tempo beat, takes a similar approach to Low Beat. What sounds like a subdued orchestral stab sits leisurely in the back of the mix as a mixture of acoustic percussion and classic drum machine zaps and blips drift through one rhythmic mode after the other. Harmonious pulls of a virtuosic flourish with these zaps in the final quarter, turning them into a dissonant melody that harks back to that awesome saxophone that made up the meat of the title track as well.

Curveball jazz for the house crew, this one is a bit special.


Low Beat