New York, NY (Top40 Charts)
OneTrickDog* Records is pleased to announce release of Meshugenah, violinist Benjamin
Sutin's second album of Klezmer-inspired contemporary music with Klazz-Ma-Tazz on June 15, 2018. Klazz' 2016 debut album, Tangibility, has been described as "one of the year's best." Like the earlier album, Meshugenah is "part noir jazz, part Klezmer, part Balkan and Middle Eastern," and "astonishingly original." (Music Daily). The tracks include both originals and re-inventions of iconic Yiddish vaudeville tunes, and reflect Sutin's effort to "do with this repertoire what Charlie Parker and John Coltrane did with Broadway songs, establish a new Great American Song Book." The tracks re-imagine the music of Sutin's childhood in a contemporary mode, borrowing from varied folk traditions as well as from contemporary jazz, rock and funk. Ultimately, however, they are linked by an exploration of what Sutin calls the search for nostalgia and novelty. Meshugenah has a commanding individuality, as reviewer, delarue, of New York Music
Sutin's compositions and arrangements draw deeply from the vast well of classic Jewish folk music," but Sutin's reinventions are "allusive, chromatically electrofied... veering from panoramic desert scapes to hints of Samba and some Cuban flair." Sutin re-arranges the classic, 'Sunrise, Sunset' as a lush, plaintive, Latin-tinged syncopated swing."
Throughout, Sutin has an uncanny connection with his virtuosic saxophonist, Elijah Shiffer, and pianist and accordionist, Ben Rosenblum, brings a dark, haunting, bittersweet brooding to the tracks, which move effortlessly from ominous to tongue-in-cheek humor. Meshugenah opens with the classic, Mein Shtetele Belz, describing the return home to a Polish shtetele, and concludes its arc with a meditation on new beginnings, in Sutin's original suite, Letting Go I and II.
Sutin began his career in Philadelphia, studying with legendary Jazz violinist, John Blake, Jr. He has performed at Victoria
Theatre, Dizzy's, Lincoln Center Out of Doors
and Appel Room, Carnegie Hall's Stern Auditorium, among others, and he has performed or recorded with Idan Raichel, Brasstracks, Eli Schewebel, Joey Weisenberg, Arijit Singh, Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Larry Harlow, Bobby
Sanabria, Pandit Chatterjee, Ronnie Burrage, Benito Gonzalez, George
Monroe, Tommy Burnes, among others. Sara Caswell observed that Sutin's "adventurous musical lines and underlying creative energy left me feeling I had witnessed a unique voice destined for something great."
Sutin is joined by Elijah Schiffer on saxophone and clarinet, Alec Goldfarb on electric guitar, Benjamin
Rosenblum on accordion and on piano, Mat Muntz on upright bass and bass guitar, Tim Rachbach on drums, and Astrid Kuljanic and Zhenya Lopatnik, lending their extraordinary vocals.
Meshugenah will be released on OneTrickDog* Records on June 15th. OneTrickDog* is a small independent label, specializing in jazz, jazz fusion, and the occasional blues. Recent releases include: Instead, by jazz pianist Ben Rosenblum, Drivin', by blues guitarist SaRon Crenshaw, Wayne Tucker's second album, Wake Up and See the Sun and ASCAP winner Elijah Shiffer's "Unhinged." Listen: