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Kaiju Project

Aseo Friesacher

Kaiju Project

Price: € 19.95
Format: CD
Label: Challenge Records
UPC: 0608917358926
Catnr: CR 73589
Release date: 07 June 2024
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Label
Challenge Records
UPC
0608917358926
Catalogue number
CR 73589
Release date
07 June 2024

"... It is quite wonderful and warm-hearted how this music conveys the feeling of letting the warmth of the solar plexus, this is an absolutely successful experiment!  "

Musikansich, 30-6-2024
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Artist(s)
Composer(s)
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About the album

The Kaiju Project is a Japanese inspired jazz group formed by the half Japanese-Austrian pianist Aseo Friesacher. Their initial idea was to bring old folk songs into a new modern context, but in addition to their compositions, this group has found their very own musical direction: a perfect blend of traditional Japanese music and meditative-creative jazz.

Aseo’s composition style is clearly rooted in Jazz, but with the use of traditional Japanese melodic elements and sounds, the music becomes very storytelling and gets a beautiful and mystic character. Also some famous soundtracks from the Ghibli movies and songs by the Japanese singer Hibari Misora, that Aseo has arranged for the band, are included in their repertoire.

The bandleader has had the vision for a long time to create this unique fusion of traditional Japanese music and Jazz in order to bring together the eastern and the western world. In fact, the meaning lies his name A-se-o, “亜為欧“: living for Asia and Europe.

The band went through a couple of changes in their formation but finally resulted in a dream team, featuring two Japanese musicians who bring the authentic sound to the band: Waka Otsu as the vocalist and Fuefuki Kana on Japanese flutes and silver flute. Furthermore there is the highly accomplished and respected ECM artist, drummer and percussionist Joost Lijbaart and the virtuosic and talented bassist Johannes Fend, who make the group complete. So far the Kaiju Project has toured in the Netherlands where most of the band members are based, they have performed in Germany and recorded their first album.

The Kaiju Project ist eine japanisch inspirierte Jazzgruppe, die vom japanisch-österreichischen Pianisten Aseo Friesacher gegründet wurde. Ihre ursprüngliche Idee war es, alte Volkslieder in einen neuen, modernen Kontext zu bringen, aber neben ihren Kompositionen hat die Gruppe ihre ganz eigene musikalische Richtung gefunden: eine perfekte Mischung aus traditioneller japanischer Musik und meditativ-kreativem Jazz.

Aseos Kompositionsstil ist eindeutig im Jazz verwurzelt, aber durch die Verwendung traditioneller japanischer melodischer Elemente und Klänge wird die Musik sehr erzählerisch und erhält einen wunderschönen und mystischen Charakter. Auch einige berühmte Soundtracks aus den Ghibli-Filmen und Lieder der japanischen Sängerin Hibari Misora, die Aseo für die Band arrangiert hat, gehören zu ihrem Repertoire.

Der Bandleader hatte schon lange die Vision, diese einzigartige Fusion aus traditioneller japanischer Musik und Jazz zu schaffen, um die östliche und die westliche Welt zusammenzubringen. In der Tat liegt die Bedeutung seines Namens A-se-o, "亜為欧": Leben für Asien und Europa.

Die Band durchlief einige Veränderungen in ihrer Formation, aber schließlich ergab sich ein Dreamteam mit zwei japanischen Musikern, die den authentischen Sound in die Band bringen: Waka Otsu als Sängerin und Fuefuki Kana an den japanischen Flöten und der Silberflöte. Hinzu kommen der hochkarätige und angesehene ECM-Künstler, Schlagzeuger und Perkussionist Joost Lijbaart und der virtuose und talentierte Bassist Johannes Fend, die die Gruppe komplett machen. Bisher ist das Kaiju Project in den Niederlanden auf Tournee gegangen, wo die meisten Bandmitglieder beheimatet sind, sie sind in Deutschland aufgetreten und haben ihr erstes Album aufgenommen.

Artist(s)

Joost Lijbaart (drums)

Joost Lijbaart is a versatile drummer who uses a lot of different influences in his playing. Born in Amsterdam, he started drumming when he was seven years old. After several years of classical percussion lessons he went to the conservatory in Hilversum where he followed lessons from Cees Kranenburg, Marcel Serierse and Gerhard Jeltes. He graduated in 1991. During his study he went to Senegal (West-Africa) to take lessons in African percussion with the legendary DuDu and Ali un D’Aya Rose. Besides jazz, pop and improvised music he worked with modern classical music and dance. In 1990 he performed with students from the National Ballet Academy, played modern classical percussion music from Xenakis, Cage, Reich and worked in different projects with...
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Joost Lijbaart is a versatile drummer who uses a lot of different influences in his playing. Born in Amsterdam, he started drumming when he was seven years old. After several years of classical percussion lessons he went to the conservatory in Hilversum where he followed lessons from Cees Kranenburg, Marcel Serierse and Gerhard Jeltes. He graduated in 1991. During his study he went to Senegal (West-Africa) to take lessons in African percussion with the legendary DuDu and Ali un D’Aya Rose.
Besides jazz, pop and improvised music he worked with modern classical music and dance. In 1990 he performed with students from the National Ballet Academy, played modern classical percussion music from Xenakis, Cage, Reich and worked in different projects with Theo Loevendie and Louis Andriessen.
He formed with Yuri Honing the Yuri Honing Trio in 1989. With this group he did concerts and tours in more than 60 countries all over the world. During a tour in the Middle East in 1998 the trio was introduced to the music of the Arab world. The result was a bigger group called Orient Express with a Libanese singer and two musicians from Iraq. This group did several tours in the Middle East and the Netherlands. In 1993 he won the 15th Europe Jazz Contest with the Nicolas Thys trio. For this performance he received the “best drummer award”. In 1995 he joined the Michiel Borstlap sextet with Yuri Honing, Eric Vloeimans and Benjamin Herman. With this group they released the double CD the sextet live in 1996 and did several tours in the Netherlands. A tour in China in 1998 was filmed by Dutch documentary maker Jop Pannekoek.
From 1995 he works also with Agog a trio with guitar player Frank Wingold and bassguitar player Mark Haanstra. 
With this group Lijbaart won in 2002 the Dutch jazz competition and was awarded as best soloist from the contest by American drummer Elvin Jones. From 2002 Joost started his own quartet “group of friends” with Yuri Honing, Benjamin Herman and Mats Eilertsen. For this group he is also very active as a composer. He played on the North sea jazz festival with this band in 2003. A DVD of this concert was released in 2005.
Another new group is the duo with piano player Wolfert Brederode. A CD of this group will come out in Autumn 2006. With the duo they did a project with dancer and choreographer Lonneke van Leth. Also they played music on the spoken book Shadowchild from Dutch writer Frans Thomese.
This year Joost’s main groups are the Yuri Honing Acoustic Quartet and Wired Paradise, an exciting electro/rock group with Yuri Honing.

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Waka Otsu (vocals)

Kana Fuefuki (flute)

Aseo Friesacher (piano)

Aseo Friesacher is a pianist and composer, born in Vienna, Austria in 1996. He started to play classical piano at the age of 6. After becoming a member of the Vienna Boy’s Choir, Aseo found his love to jazz music and eventually formed his own jazz trio. Since then the pianist became very active in the jazz scene and got the chance to perform in prestigious places such as the United Nations, Porgy & Bess in Vienna, as well as renowned venues in the Netherlands such as LantarenVenster and the Bimhuis. The half Japanese/Austrian talent has been awarded with multiple awards: 1st price of the Podium.Jazz Competition in Austria 2014, Finalist of the Leiden Jazz Award 2021, 2nd prize at...
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Aseo Friesacher is a pianist and composer, born in Vienna, Austria in 1996. He started to play classical piano at the age of 6. After becoming a member of the Vienna Boy’s Choir, Aseo found his love to jazz music and eventually formed his own jazz trio. Since then the pianist became very active in the jazz scene and got the chance to perform in prestigious places such as the United Nations, Porgy & Bess in Vienna, as well as renowned venues in the Netherlands such as LantarenVenster and the Bimhuis. The half Japanese/Austrian talent has been awarded with multiple awards: 1st price of the Podium.Jazz Competition in Austria 2014, Finalist of the Leiden Jazz Award 2021, 2nd prize at the Gexto Jazz Competition in 2022 with Loek van den Berg Quintet.
Since 2018 Aseo is living in the Netherlands. He studied at the Codarts University in Rotterdam and graduated from the Royal Conservatoire The Hague where he received his master title with distinction. He became engaged in various projects and bands such as the Aseo Trio, Kaiju Project, Loek van den Berg Quintet and the Jong Metropole, to name a few.

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Press

... It is quite wonderful and warm-hearted how this music conveys the feeling of letting the warmth of the solar plexus, this is an absolutely successful experiment!  
Musikansich, 30-6-2024

Despite Far Eastern-ethnic inspirations and meditative melodies, the music is not far removed from contemporary jazz idioms...  
jazz-fun, 07-6-2024

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