A quartet that already gets attention because of the names of the musicians. NENAD VASILIC, BOJAN ZULFIKARPASIC, JARROD CAGWIN and WOLFGANG PUSCHNIG, bring jazz to life in a truly excellent way on their recently released CD “Live in Theater Akzent” (Galileo).

When four musicians of such great talent come together on stage, you can definitely count on something special. The double bassist, composer and arranger Nenad Vasilic, who comes from Serbia and lives in Vienna, brought together three exceptional musicians for his concert at Theater Akzent last year. Bojan Zulfikarpašić (piano), Jarrod Cagwin (percussion, drums) and Wolfgang Puschnig (saxophone), are all highly talented musicians who are always capable (especially live) of making every note magical.


Cover “Live in Theater Akzent”
Cover “Live in Theater Akzent”

And it was magical in Theater Akzent. What the four musicians perform under the direction of Nenad Vasilic is the high art of solid lyrical jazz. A varied jazz which slips easily into the ears. And it does this despite a very high degree of playfulness and experimentation. The four-man team performs with a refreshing and infectious lightness. Their music grips you from the very first second thanks to their ability to forge a well rounded musical arc out of a variety of elements.

Nenad Vasilic and his band give their joy of playing a free rein. They open their melodies in a variety of ways including other musical styles, playing styles and different eras of jazz history. At one point they mix in Balkan folklore. At another the pulse of Latin jazz suddenly breaks through to the surface. The pieces swing and groove incessantly between high and stirring dynamics, touching melancholic reduction and mysteriously subtle tunes. An interplay that can surprise again and again and makes their music unpredictable.

Nenad Vasilic and his band present themselves on their live CD as a group that really knows how to make the sound of jazz a true experience. The songs are a real pleasure. They possess that certain something which makes you listen again and again. Very recommendable.

Michael Ternai (translated from German by Dave Dempsey)

Nenad Vasilic
Nenad Vasilic (Facebook)