Album info

Album-Release:
2022

HRA-Release:
20.05.2022

Album including Album cover

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  • 1Liquid Salt Sleeps Lost07:25
  • 2Restless Stone Stops Motion08:20
  • 3Still Found from Below06:35
  • 4One Hit Backlash03:50
  • 5Ground Most Must Take07:23
  • 6Slipping Pace Returning Time04:34
  • 7Final Mirrors Facing Flames04:23
  • 8All After Nothing Left06:25
  • Total Runtime48:55

Info for Somnambule



Whoever expects only calm, dreamy music because of the album title, Somnambule, will be surprised. Olga Reznichenko does not take the name of the album so literally, but rather in an associative way. "It's not directly about sleepwalking, but about different nocturnal states. These also included semi-conscious phases in which my thoughts don't come to rest or melodies that I played before still reverberate."

The opener “Liquid Salt Sleeps Lost” is indeed quite lyrical with its harmonic moments, but the trio's energy potential already flashes up in between the finesse. The following “Restless Stone Stops Motion” also begins quite poetically, but already in the main melodic motif Olga Reznichenko's piano notes flow a bit faster, and Maximilian Stadtfeld intertwines the beats more dynamically. His individual accents inspire the pianist's improvisations. As she breaks out ever further with a remarkable balance of elegance and determination, bassist Lorenz Heigenhuber also soars into inventive, spurring lines. After a good four minutes and a brief phase of contemplation, the proceedings take an unexpected turn. Suddenly repetitive figures dominate and Reznichenko lets them spin and dance more and more powerfully, finding an own expression between classical minimalism and Nik Bärtsch's Zen-Grooves.

It is rare that a debut album impresses this much after the first two tracks and some 16 minutes of running time. The depth in Reznichenko's playing, the oscillating of timbres and stylistic influences, the singing tone and sharp rhythmic detail of bassist Heigenhuber as well as Stadtfeld's masterful, sometimes melodious, sometimes eruptive style of drumming create a unique sound and give Somnambule its special aura. While “Still From Below Found” is a bit calmer again, developing subtle suggestiveness, “One Hit Backlash” impresses with spirited, almost nervous and also quite free expressivity, without the band ever completely breaking the form. In the introduction of “Ground Most Must Take” Heigenhuber bows lightly squeaking notes on his bass, later the band increases the intensity one more time with purposeful densification. “Final Mirrors Facing Flames” captivates with rhythmic finesse as well as rolling piano cascades, which point to Reznichenko's liking for Russian (late) Romanticism à la Prokofiev, Mussorgsky or Scriabin. Finally, “All After Nothing Left” with its mysterious harmonies and swelling dynamics sounds like new music for an old film by Roman Polanski.

When composing, Olga Reznichenko follows an intuitive rather than conceptual approach. Her pieces are based on improvisations that she plays alone and records. She then gradually distills the essence of her ideas. And not until then she shows the music to her accompanists: "I bring material to our rehearsals that I enjoy 100% and that is already worked out quite precisely." Nonetheless, she is open to ideas that Stadtfeld and Heigenhuber bring in. The origins of Somnambule's pieces date back to 2018. "Back then I had the idea of combining music and read narration, and I asked a friend if he could write something for that," Olga Reznichenko says. "Thereupon he divided a dream into eight episodes and told me the stories of these episodes, and I wrote eight compositions for them. The titles he came up with for the eight chapters became the names of the pieces, and the music is the narration."

Since then, she has repeatedly refined details, often after concerts. There had been several shows before the recording date on December 7, 2020, thus the band was wide-awake in the Loft Studio in Cologne, which resulted in an intuitive understanding in their agile interactions. The concentrated recording during the day was followed by a streaming concert in the evening at the same location. "I wasn't feeling quite so fresh anymore, yet still we were able to build such a strong shared energy at the gig that a lot of it actually made it onto the record," Reznichenko rejoices about the magic of the moment.

Olga Reznichenko was born in 1989 in the port city of Taganrog at the mouth of the Don River into the Sea of Azov. Encouraged by her musical mother and grandmother, she took piano lessons from the age of eight. Jazz concerts at school sparked Reznichenko's passion for jazz and - against the will of her parents - she secretly began playing with musicians from this genre. Initially she studied at the conservatory in Rostov-on-Don, and in 2012 Reznichenko moved to Leipzig, where she studied with Richie Beirach for two years, then with his successor Michael Wollny. Especially the latter has recognizably inspired her playing. In 2018 she graduated with a bachelor's degree, and in the summer of 2022 she will complete her master's in jazz piano.

With her band Ylativ Algo, Olga Reznichenko won the 1st prize at the 40th Getxo International Jazz Festival in 2014, and in 2017 she placed 2nd with the duo Sofia & Olga at the Sparda Jazz Awards during the Jazz Rally Düsseldorf. In the same year, the two musicians released their debut album Shells in Motion. In 2018, Reznichenko played at the festival Leipziger Jazztage in the Matthew Herbert Brexit Big Band. She is also a member of BREU with Maximilian Breu, Andreas Dombert and Andreas Lang, and part of A Word Is A Swallow with Theresia Philipp, Robert Lucaciu, Philipp Scholz. In 2021 Reznichenko became a member of the ensemble Spielvereinigung Süd. Since 2021 she is a program curator for the Leipziger Jazztage and part of the organizing team of the Mjuzik Festival in Leipzig.

Olga Reznichenko founded her current trio for her final bachelor's concert at the University of Music in Leipzig. The resulting repertoire celebrated its public premiere in a three-night engagement at the Hot Club in Lisbon. At the same time, Max Stadtfeld and Lorenz Heigenhuber, in a trio with vibraphonist Volker Heugen, were awarded the Newcomer Award of the City of Leipzig 2019. Earlier that year, Stadtfeld received his international "accolade" as drummer of Michael Wollny's live project Bau.Haus.Klang (with Émile Parisien and others), which excelled at the opening of the Bauhaus Festival at Berlin's Akademie der Künste (with broadcast on Arte-Live), at the London Jazz Fest and the Leipziger Jazztage. Heigenhuber meanwhile worked with Louis Sclavis, Enders Room, and was engaged for various theater productions, including "Die Räuber" [The Robbers] (Theatertreffen Berlin 2017).

"I'm not such an analytical type," Olga Reznichenko explains cheerfully, "I like to just let go of all thinking when I play." It is the mixture of profound knowledge and clear visions, of moods and timbres for instance, that feeds Reznichenko's creative drive. With her band, she combines complex harmonic and rhythmic structures, delicate and powerful moments, and captivating melodies to a personal aesthetic that makes Somnambule an outstanding debut album.

Olga Reznichenko, piano
Lorenz Heigenhuber, doublebass
Maximilian Stadtfeld, drums



Olga Reznichenko
In never-exhausting, effervescent energy, jazz pianist and composer Olga Reznichenko surrenders to exploring extremes. Both the impulse to play her instrument almost destructively and the pleasure of beautiful, peaceful sounds find quite natural space in her intuitive playing. In her eponymous trio, Olga Reznichenko combines complex harmonic and rhythmic structures with a simple, almost minimalist texture and easily accessible melodies. At the same time, her distinct feeling for aesthetics is reflected expressively in her compositions. The pieces, which are mainly born out of improvisations, provide space for Reznichenko's pure, intuitive joy of playing to unfold its full musical potential. Olga Reznichenko was born in 1989 in Taganrog, Russia, where she began her musical training as a classical pianist at the age of eight. After several years of intensive study, one day the jazz department, which practices, learns and casually hangs out in the corridors under the same roof of the music school, catches her attention. The jazz fire is lit and her fingers begin to find new ways on the keys to make the piano sound. Her parents are initially suspicious of the world of jazz and so Reznichenko keeps it from them when she takes jazz piano lessons in Rostov, a few hours away by train, as part of her education. What follows is half a year of secretly commuting between worlds, which the pubescent Olga finances by taking a part-time job as a répétiteur for the trombone classes. After the restoration of family peace and the parental insight that Olga's mind and joy of playing are at home in jazz and improvisation, she passes the entrance examination for jazz piano at the S.V. Rakhmaninov State Conservatory in Rostov in 2008. In 2012 Olga Reznichenko followed fellow student and jazz saxophonist Evgeny Ring to the Hochschule für Musik und Theater "Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy" in Leipzig. In addition to her curiosity about the European jazz scene, her fascination with the Gothic churches of Europe and the prospect of thoroughly developed cycle paths also drove her to make the switch. Reznichenko studies with professors Richie Beirach and Michael Wollny and decides to stay in Leipzig for her Master of Music after successfully completing her Bachelor of Music. With the inspiration of modern Russian composers, such as Rachmaninov, in her heart, she fully soaks up her new surroundings and immerses herself in the European jazz scene. With jazz singer Sophia Bicking, she founded the band "Sophia&Olga". After first appearances at the X-Jazz 2014, among others, and the release of their debut album "Shells in Motion" in 2017, the duo wins second place at the Sparda Jazz Awards of the Jazz Rally Düsseldorf in the same year. Reznichenko's quintet "Ylativ Algo" experiments with wide arcs of tension, drawing on both the jazz tradition of the 60s and folkloristic elements. In 2014, the band won the GETXO jazz competition in Spain. With Theresia Philipp (ts), Robert Lucaciu (kb) and Philipp Scholz (dr), Reznichenko plays under the band name "A Word is a swallow" at the South Tyrol Jazz Festival 2021. She is part of the Leipzig Contemporary Big Band "Spielvereinigung Sued" and plays on the debut album of Nuremberg drummer Maximilian Breu. In bands like "Space Shuttle" and "Oluma", Olga can sometimes be heard in full euphoria on the synths. In 2022, her trio's debut album will be released on the renowned Traumton label. Through her involvement as a curator of various Leipzig music festivals, Olga is also helping to shape the future of Germany's jazz scene outside of her own playing.

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