Bassist Avishai Cohen, best known at this point for his work with Chick Corea, on his own projects mixes together adventurous jazz with influences from world music, original folk melodies, and his own creativity. He composed 12 selections on his second CD, including tributes to Horace Silver and Chick Corea (which do not really sound that close to either of those pianist/composer's styles). The music is consistently unpredictable, with Cohen being joined by pianist Jason Lindner, drummer Jeff Ballard, Jimmy Greene on reeds, trombonist Steve Davis, guitarist Amos Hoffman, a string quartet, and up to five singers (who are mostly used in the background). An intriguing set by an up-and-coming composer who is also a very fluent bassist.
Now one of the most popular jazz players of the past decade, Avishai Cohen takes his artistic approach to its zenith, with Seven Seas. Featuring nursery rhymes, lullabies and suites in which heroic inspiration and symphonics abound. Seven Seas plunges us into a fabulous sound voyage, in which understatement and magnitude play a never-ending game of ping-pong, a trip that easily transposes to the silver screen. Once you get past the opening credits dripping in joyful nostalgia, you steer past isles of rhythm and continents of sound, winding up with a traditional piano ladino with Cohen's intense vocals. Cohen has reached a new pinnacle as an artist. It's more of a fusion album, perhaps bringing us closer to reality of an odyssey, with its title that transports us into nautical legend: seven seas' many twists and turns make it the most exciting of albums in Cohen's discography.