Gig Seeker Pro


Dublin, Leinster, Ireland | SELF

Dublin, Leinster, Ireland | SELF
Band EDM Jazz





This came my way a couple of weeks ago but I just got around to listening last week and was immediately intrigued. Spearheaded by Daniel Jacobson aka ZoiD, the founder of Diatribe Records who makes curious electronic noise which, set to guitar, bass, drums and vocals, has made the Sundillon EP a mesmerising, singular release that melds the spirit of jazz with the ghosts of future sounds. - Harmless Noise

"Entering the mind of ZoiD"

In my first post I mentioned an album titled ‘Zoid versus The Jazz Musicians of Ireland Vol. 1.’ But I realized that many people I have talked to about this album, or have stumbled upon me listening to this album at work, don’t know anything about the album or the artist. So let me educate.

Zoid is, to use the parlance of our time, the alter-ego, pseudonym, Hyde to the Jekyll, of the real life musician Daniel Jacobson. He’s a composer, guitarist, and electro-acoustic musician who constantly pushes the boundaries of these mediums. Besides releasing Zoid as a solo artist, he also works with Irish fiddler Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh in a math-traditional duo! How splendid it must be. It just made me think of Georg Cantor doing the Riverdance or an Irish Jig, infinitely……..And Jacobson can also be heard playing with the contemporary really-big-band ‘The Zoid Ensemble.’

Jacobson also co-founded Diatribe Recordings, a label that allows the contemporary Irish creative scene a steady outlet for its musical fruits. According to the Diatribe website, the label intends to release a set of recordings in the “Bottlenote Series,” featuring members of the exclusive Bottlenote Musicians’ Club. But as of today there are no such releases listed on the website, so keep checking.

But in 2007 Jacobson released ‘Zoid versus the Jazz Musicians…,’ his first release on Diatribe. I actually remember the first time I heard this album. It was an awfully rainy day here in Santa Cruz, I think two winters ago, and upon arriving at my humble abode from being out I found my lovely girlfriend listening to this album. To say I was blown away would be a gross understatement.

What is so fascinating about the album is Jacobson’s masterful balance of electronics with musicians. You see, each track on the album is, so to speak, a battle, fight, dual, and clash between the musical mind of Zoid/Jacobson and the virtuosic playing of some of Irelands finest jazz musicians. Jacobson is never shy or subtle in warping, cutting, and editing the recorded jazz tracks, but he never goes overboard and keeps the recorded tracks fairly ‘authentic’ to the original recordings. Even though the tracks get choppy and angular at times, Jacobson is able to preserve an improvised feel throughout the album—not an easy feat when working with programmed music.

The first track is still one of my favorites, and it features Tommy Halferty, a jazz guitarist. Here is a link to listen to clips of the tracks:


But I suggest doing more research into Daniel Jacobson. He’s a gifted composer and understands his craft, a trait that easily comes through the music.

Until next time.
- Electronica Musica

"Zoid Versus the Jazz Musicians of Ireland"

ZOID: Zoid Vs the Jazz Musicians of Ireland, Volume 1 (CD on Diatribe Recordings)

This release from 2007 features 42 minutes of ilbient jazz.

Zoid is Zoidan Jankalovich. He plays electronics (and Jews harp and recorder on one track, and guitar on a few tracks). Joining him on this record are several Irish jazz musicians: Tommy Halferty (on guitar), Justin Carroll (on Fender Rhodes), Ronan Guilfoyle (on acoustic bass), Greg Felton (on piano), Senn Carpio (on drums and Fender Rhodes), Michael Buckley (on tenor saxophone), and Mike Nielsen (on guitars).

This is a truly odd album. It fuses modern jazz music with electronic embellishment, resulting in a curious blend of both genres, yet emerging as a unique gem whose appeal goes beyond its roots and components.

For each track, Zoid sits down with a particular jazz musician and they commingle their sonic talents to produce tunes of delightful charm.

In the first piece, jazz guitar generates a stately cafe temperament that coexists with Fender Rhodes keyboards of pleasantly slippery disposition. Meanwhile, bubbling electronics provide a celestial panorama with gurgling diodes and some snappy e-perc. Ilbient glitches introduce a quirky edginess to the tune.

Next, cerebral acoustic bass chords wander through a miasma of eccentric electronics and rhythms that seem determined to sabotage the melody with unexpected breaks and divergent beats.

In track three, Zoid?s glitchy electronics establish a terse alliance with a classical piano. While synthetic beats generate idiosyncratic tempos, the piano strives to maintain a semblance of sensible cohesion. The result evokes the feeling of a recital plagued by techno invaders.

Then a real drummer provides freeform percussion that punctuates a churning pool of cantankerous electronics. There is no evident winner in this engaging conflict.

In track five, a winsome saxophone achieves a demonstrative jazz presence while the electronics force sinuous beats on the piece. Conventional guitar stylings emerge in the mix, helping the sax to maintain the melody. This union produces an enticing tune seasoned with a characteristic eccentricity.

Next, a bevy of guitars (traditional and artificial) contribute erratic strings in conjunction with Zoid?s ilbient rhythmic demeanor. As the song progresses, the guitars muster dominance and create an alluring presence with their contrasting riffs.

In track seven, the electronics flourish in association with a liquid bassline, achieving a flowing sound flavored by the almost hesitant cybernetic rhythmics. The bass generates a lavish jazzy presence that ultimately stands victorious.

For the final piece, piano and electronics clash again. The synthetic beats mirror certain piano keys, establishing a sultry integration of near-divine mien, proving the viability that machines and mankind can peacefully coexist.

These compositions are entertaining blends of traditional jazz and modern electronics (with the emphasis on ilbient techno sensibilities).

A booklet is included with cartoon art illustrating Zoid?s struggle to bring this project to actualization while dodging the interference of machine lifeforms in a post-apocalyptic wasteland. - Sonic Curiousity


When asked to comment in 1971 on the growing presence of electronic instruments in jazz, the pianist Bill Evans remarked that the means of production were of rather less importance than the mind brought to bear on the new electronic gadgets and gee gaws. As a graduate of both the jazz programme at the Newpark School of Music and the music technology course at Trinity College, Daniel Jacobson a.k.a. Zoidan Jankalovich is in possession of a mind sensitive enough to the mores of both idioms to attempt an effective marriage of both. While laptops are now de rigueur in texturally-driven free improvisation settings, they have yet to secure a consistent presence on the jazz bandstand, due in part to the longstanding difficulties laptop performers have had in matching the fluid quick fire interplay of their acoustic counterparts.

Zoid vs. the Jazz Musicians of Ireland, however, is not an album particularly rooted in the live interplay of musician and electronics. Rather the instrumental performances are used as fodder for post-production manipulations. Jacobson’s antecedent in jazz terms is Teo Macero, who as far back as Miles Davis’ 1958 album, Porgy and Bess, was using cut-up techniques to reorder fragmented instrumental performances into singular tracks. This technique became an increasingly important compositional tool for Davis, reaching its apotheosis with the later Bitches Brew and On the Corner albums.

For Jacobson, with this, his debut album, the performances are stepping stones in a broader compositional process. Each track on the album pits one of the musicians against a primarily beat-driven electronic sound world. The instrumental material is treated with broad brushstrokes of electronic manipulation, thus dislocating it from any discernible jazz context. Frequently the solo and accompaniment jazz model is supplanted by textural or rhythmic reconfigurations of short instrumental figures. The soloists then weave lines between the detritus of their own spliced phrases.

Only ‘Zoid vs. Michael Buckley’, which features Jacobson himself on guitar, allows the soloists to extemporise relatively unimpeded over a chord sequence in what might be loosely termed a traditional way. The tracks featuring guitarists Tommy Halferty and Mike Neilsen are particularly strong. Neilsen sounds as if he really sank his teeth into the project, armed with electric, classical, microtonal and synth guitars. The only disappointment here is that, on such a rhythmically structured album, Jacobson does not pit his rhythmic machinations against those of drummer Sean Carpio, opting instead for a loose, textural juxtaposition of musician and machine. Perhaps it’s unfair to question the artist’s prerogative on the issue, but on an outing billed as Zoid vs. The Jazz Musicians of Ireland, this track promised to be the heavyweight attraction that could really test the mettle of both pugilists. It might be a rematch to look forward to. - The Journal of Music


"Sundillion EP" - Diatribe Records 2011

"ZoiD Versus the Jazz Musicians Ireland" - Diatribe Records 2007



zoiBand is a group of five mutant jazz and funk musician/robots from Dublin. They just launched their debut EP “Sundillion” on Diatribe Records.

The group is led by the founder of Diatribe Records, producer of “ZoiD Versus the Jazz Musicians of Ireland” (Diatribe, 2007) Daniel Jacobson (aka ZoiD).

After taking a nearly 3-year hiatus from music in 2008 to practice Vipassana meditation, ZoiD returned to Ireland and started writing beats again. This time, the influence of jazz complexity was controlled by the force of 90s rave culture and electronic dance music which has always remains close to ZoiD’s heart.

Another change is the use of the pop song format, and catchy melodies with lyrics written in response to real experiences gained while travelling. Musically, ZoiD is looking for a cohesive union of the music of Aphex Twin, Burt Bacharach and Charlie Parker, representing the best of electronic, pop and jazz.

The zoiBand live show features the vocal talents of Jenna Harris and Keith Fennell, the bass playing of local legend Dave Redmond, the drumming of human-beat-calculator (and ZoiD’s younger brother) Matthew Jacobson and the laptop+guitar skills of ZoiD. zoiBand perform songs about atoms, cake, love, death, in which robust grooves aimed squarely at the dancefloor are the order of the day.