30th July 2017: Paradigm Shift reviewed in Polish online site Era Jazzu

MJ’s latest album Paradigm Shift continues to get great press around the world. Here’s the latest from the Polish site Era Jazzu

Here’s the review in english – and thanks to Antonina Brown for the help with translating the review.

It’s difficult to make a straight forward description of the artstic and musical influences which are capable by the young American creator Michael Janisch. Because on one hand he is an amazing contra and electric bass player and a very interesting composer, and on the other he creates original formations as a leader while producing and initiating wonderful sessions for his own label Whirlwind Recordings.

Michael is an American who was brought up in Wisconsin, USA. He began his musical journey on the piano, then studied history at Minnesota State University in Mankato. After his first college to music he returned, and deepened himself in the secrets of playing the contrabass at the University of Wisconsin where he quickly transferred to (receiving a noble grant) the famous Berkley College of Music in Boston and after graduation from this prestigious jazz school he moved looking for success in the jazz capital of New York. Quickly after this with his wife Sarah they moved to London, and from this point for this young musician Europe became the unfolding place for an artistic and a life story.

In the Autumn of 2008 with the saxophone player Patrick Cornelius he released the album Traveling Song and with Transatlantic Collective (TAC) they go on tour for several seasons in Europe and US. This studio formation was a place / space for further musical creations for artists such as Christian Randalu, John Escreet, Dan Tepfer, Jason Rebello, Quintin Collins, Jay Phelpsa, Ambrose Akinmusire, Avishai Cohenai and the percussionist Colin Stranaham and Paul Witgen.

In the environment of young talented musicians Janisch creates a number of interesting projects beginning in 2010 with the creation of his label Whirlwind Recordings. The first album from the label as an owner-producer was Purpous Built, in collaboration with Walter Smith III Patrick Cornelius Jason Palmer, Jonathan Blake, Aaron Goldberg, Phil Robson, Mike Moreno, Jim Hert and Paul Booth. Many of these musicians then also quickly created and released their own albums within the realm of Whirlwind Recordings. To this day this label holds about 100 amazing albums documenting an incredibly interesting European and American jazz scene. The group of artists who are focused around the recording company enables to bring out another of Janisch’s projects – a yearly Whirlwind Festival in londons King Place.

Michael works incredibly consistently with his music and original projects. The most interesting is the album Banned in London, recorded with the Cuban pianist Aruan Ortiz. (With guest appearance from Greg Osby, Raynald Coloma and Rudy Roystone). In 2014 the album First Meeting Live in London comes out  with the Jazz stars saxophone player Lee Koitz pianist Dan Tepfer and bass player Jeff Williams. Janisch as a talented bass player is also the musician of numerous concerts, sessions and recordings with the contribution of other musicians who love to invite the “American Londoner” to their bands. He’s played with Joe Lovano, Dianne Reeves, Seasmus Blake, George Garzone, Aaron Parks, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Mark Turner, Kenny Wheeler, Evan Parker, Garyn Husband, Ingrid Jensen and even with Quincy Jones, Shirkey Horn, Gary Burton, Wynton Marsalis, Roy Hardgrove and Kurt Elling.

The most recent, solo and double album is Paradigm Shift, Janisch created it with Leonardo Genovese (keyboards) Paul Brooth (tenor saxophone) Jason Palmer (trumpet) and the percussionist Colin Stranahan and equally responsible on the electronics – Alex Bonney (known for the album Catatumbo and those projects like Human/Being a Human and Brass Mask / Spy Boy).  The album was recorded live at the Pizza Express Jazz Club in London – it’s an amazing documentation of deeply thought-through improvisations and sound design with intelligent compositions – the unfolding compositions creates interesting musical visuals.

Michael is also enthusiastically welcomed by the public at his concerts as well as praised by music influentials, the prestigious The Guardian see him as “an incredible improvisor and a virtuous,” Bass Musician Magazine claims downright that “Janisch is one of the few bass players who with the right passion dedication and musicality approaches the contrabass and the electric bass play equally” as if there wasn’t enough of gratulations Janisch got honoured by the Parliamentary Jazz Award and the famous MOBO Award music honours as The Best Jazz Act in 2016.

Posted on Jul 30th, 2017 by Elaine.