FJAZZ
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FJAZZ

New York, New York, United States

New York, New York, United States
EDM Jazz

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"Embody - FJAZZ"

FJAZZ releases "Embody", complete with co-production from mix tape, murder (and scotch) and all around mix master favorite Krychek. The track is a strong confluence of the possibilities alt electronics and alt jazz can create when they form a straight line. The light, airy electro backbeat sets up the wandering saxophones perfectly, volleying them but always cushioning the breaks. It's fitting that the artwork above is pointilist: rarely have artwork and sound matched so well. Two seemingly disparate genres (electronic: a stereotypically taut, controlled sound, and jazz--the most improvisational sound) combine, and in their intricacies, reveal a new whole. To check out more, head here to listen to FJazz's "Sound Bending" EP. - Scotch and Murder


"Artist: FJAZZ / Album: Posthuman Times"

FJAZZ is an innovator in experimental dub-step, trip-hop, and down-tempo electronica with seasonings of jazz, Latin, and poetic scat. The classical upbringing and jazz leanings are definitely evident throughout the new album. The eleven tracks span the gamut of electronic noises, trippy rhythms, and deep space inspiration with an uncanny ability to create interstellar sound-scapes with attitude.

The opening gunfire and riot scenes of “50,000 (Dead Brazilians Annually)” slowly merges into a slight techno melody with laser-like sounds and bass-trippy melodies. Meanwhile, the gunfire fades into background noise of a raucous crowd and swishy metallic sounds for a moment. Then, gunfire restarts and a video-game-like soundtrack ensues without any guitar or vocal accompaniment. Electronic noises and metallic percussion round out the track with tambourine-like sounds. “Moving Forward” begins with a trippy, swishy sound and electronic jingles that seem to be originating from a starship somewhere above Earth. The jazzy sax, reverberating guitar, and metallic percussive beat follows a backdrop of sizzling, tinny noises with radio frequencies and snowy sounds. The overall melody picks up pace with a laser-light show of ear-piercing sounds by way of the keyboard. The lack of vocals does not hinder the composition in any way. At times, the track contains elements of France’s down-tempo group, Air.

“My Step” opens with a muted, jazzy organ intro with electronic drawls, beeps, and fluttering noises with electronic and air-driven motifs. The trippy, high-speed percussion is a perfect counterbalance for the slower metallic tones, drones, and wizardry. Though, half-way through, the sound of an aircraft flying over signals a quieter segment of solo keyboard, before the zippy, electronic percussion and fluttering array of aural color blend into a stuttering flute solo. “Greek Secret” opens with an ear-piercing sound of knocking, metallic noises and shaker sounds. This is the first track with vocals. The trippy, female vocals contain a European presence with jazzy melodies and drippy, fluid embellishments. The break-beat melodies are reminiscent of trip-hop rhythms with electronic ringing, washes of bombarding noises, and even slower moments with more of an avant-garde and experimental tone. The varied vocals, percussion, and electronic motifs make the track stand out, despite its short length.

“Australia” opens with a slight beat and metallic drone with gunfire-like rhythms, electronic buzzing, and helicopter-like adornments. The rest of the track is reminiscent of a bad dream sequence with indiscriminate and unpredictable electronic noises that occur without any sense of melodic direction. The combat of noises makes the track the most diverse and musically-rich on the album. However, the bombardment of noises takes away from the musical cohesion of the other tracks on the album. “Karmageddon” opens with a trippy, scattered beat and swishy percussion with some female vocals in the form of a fast rap with piano and sax melodies. The jazz does not last for long, as the electronic percussion, fast vocals, and dizzying melodies consume the aural sound output. The almost Latin-esque background connotes Fernando’s Brazilian roots, but electronica rules the airwaves on this track.

Fernando Arruda Fjazz’s global upbringing in the US, Australia, and Brazil does not necessarily determine musical preferences and genres. For Fjazz, the electronica genre is the preferred choice. The trippy, techno-like, and experimental nature of the music is more avant-garde than anything melodic. The diverse mix of sounds and metallic noises should satisfy the eclectic listener of trip-hop, down-tempo, and experimental music. The only downside on the entire album is the incorporation of too many different noises at one time on some of the tracks. The result is a confusing mix of music; rather than a cohesive, musical journey that allows all the instruments and notes to shine. Nevertheless, Fjazz hits high marks with a solid mix of electronica for the seasoned and not-so-seasoned aural, global traveler.

Review by Matthew Forss - Matthew Forss


"Artist: FJAZZ / Title: Sound Bending"

So, a question: What exactly can’t Fjazz’s newest LP Sound Bending do? The answer is: not much, apparently, and given the breadth of Fernando Arruda’s vision here, make sure and keep a head up and an ear open or you just might miss something. A fairly cohesive and expansive listen throughout, Arruda’s (aka Fjazz’s) Sound Bending is brimming with melody, variety, and most of all rhythm, and is nearly all a product of Arruda’s singular creative process. From the live and electronic instrumentation and composition, to mixing and production credits, all the way down to the album artwork and design, Sound Bending is a pretty class act all the way: artistically viable and largely idiosyncratic, professionally envisioned and executed, it sounds great, and is primed for immediate uptake/reception on a number of fronts. From dancefloor and live venue applications to soundtrack fodder and art piece installations, there’s a bit of everything here to go around, and overall Sound Bending is a bountiful listen that manages to maintain a consistent organicity about it that is bound to differentiate it from other electronic releases this year.

Central to the FJazz project is Arruda himself. A kind of one-man wrecking crew on this excursion, Arruda’s multiple (read: nearly all of them) roles in the project serve to imbue his work with another, richer layer of eccentricity. A saxophonist/multi-instrumentalist first and foremost, Arruda’s horn-work comes across strongly herein, and the saxophone lines often work to under-gird and elevate individual pieces across Sound Bending’s thirteen tracks, lending an air of soul to the layered, lush electronica throughout. An accomplished musician and sound technician in his own right, Arruda plays out with a slew of projects in the NYC area, has a degree in Jazz from the New School, is inspired by John Cage and pre-modern digital musical equipment, and has worked in studio with a growing number of well-known artists (including Blondie). All of these diverse pursuits are realized inbetween the lines of Sound Bending’s numerous nooks and crannies, as the sounds oscillate between jazzy house/disco/club fare, skitter-breaks, electro-lounge, down-tempo and chill, ambient exotica, soundtrackish and art-house abstract expressionisms, and even a dose of Sleep Chamber/Clock DVA-inspired industrial metal for good measure. A tall order to be sure, but there’s a fairly consistent spinal column running through Sound Bending’s scattered viscera that keeps the contents from spiraling too far afield, and the whole thing manages to jive pretty well overall. Did I mention that it’s an instrumental record? No matter, you probably won’t miss the vocals.

Standout tracks abound, such as the soulful and street-savvy “Sound Bender”, the 2 AM scatter and flash of “World Around Me”, the abstract swaths of “Psychosis” (a personal favorite here for its disposition and movement), cool and collected “Round Edge” (another favorite), four on the floor club bender “Where Cement Meets Grass”, the uptown traffic nervous edge of “Rendezvous”, and the electro-futurist landscaping of “Why” (though the whispered vox are a little forced). Individual tracks tend to avoid the stasis that can creep into the generic and overly-programmed electro-track, and often express multiple points of focus, mood, and melody. Others tracks, such as the soundtracky “Inspired to Death”, the layered groove of “Owl”, and album opener “Salt Waters” feel nice on first listen but seem like they could eventually become fly-over tracks (though only time will tell).

A pretty great listen overall; FJazz probably has what you’re looking for here. And given his current forward velocity, keep an eye out for what this guy has on the horizon.

Review by Reed Burnam - Reed Burnam


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

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