Avishai Cohen contributed all ten selections to Continuo, originals that are often influenced by Middle Eastern music. Cohen's bass dominates throughout, easily taking the most solo space. His trio with pianist Sam Barsh and drummer Mark Guilliana is tight, often being joined by Amos Hoffman on oud. The music is atmospheric, sometimes introspective, touched strongly by Western classical music and spontaneous in spots.
Avishai Cohen impressed a lot of listeners with his soulful contributions to Mark Turner’s Lathe of Heaven album in 2014. Now the charismatic Tel Aviv-born trumpeter has his ECM leader debut in a programme of expansive and impressionistic compositions for jazz quartet (trumpet, piano, bass, drums), augmented by tenor saxophone on a few pieces. Into The Silence is dedicated to the memory of Avishai’s father David, reflecting upon the last days of his life with grace and restraint. Avishai’s tender muted trumpet sets the emotional tone of the music in the album’s opening moments and his gifted cast of musicians explore its implications. Israeli pianist Yonathan Avishai has played with Cohen in many settings and solos creatively inside the trumpeter’s haunting compositions, sometimes illuminating them with the phraseology of the blues.
From the brooding opening title track to the closing Chet Baker homage, "I Fall in Love Too Easily," Dark Nights unapologetically embraces the heart of jazz. Every aspect of the album—from the cover photo, to Cohen's precise trumpet inflections, to the trio's dedication to immediacy and collective improvisation (and even the album's forays into electronic affects)—is saturated with the emblematic textures, rhythms, and imagery of jazz. This is achieved with professionalism, creativity, and skill, without a wit of irony or cliche, while avoiding both navel-gazing insularity and crowd-pleasing revivalism.
Avishai Cohen, who became well known in the jazz world during his period with Chick Corea, is one of the top bassists in the world. His virtuosity and constant creativity in both a modern mainstream format and on funkier grooves seem effortless. As Is…Live at the Blue Note contains a CD (the first seven selections) and a DVD. "Smash," "Feediop," the ballad "Remembering" and an overlong "Caravan" (the one non-original) are featured in both formats while three songs are different.
From Darkness sees the Israeli composer, bassist and singer go back to the very core of his musical idiom and activity, but with Avishai, what may seem as a return to the basics always brings the promise of a new beginning. From Darkness once again opens an essential gateway into a new creative and expressive dimension. “It is the first time since Gently Disturbed that I have the feeling I am reaching a new, fresh and incredibly substantial form with the trio.” A belief reinforced by two outstanding partners, pianist Nitai Hershkovits and drummer Daniel Dor.
Trumpeter/composer Avishai Cohen is a forward-thinking musician who has performed in various ensembles mixing avant-garde jazz, post-bop, klezmer, rock, and world music since the '90s…
"The first time I heard Nitai, it was in a little cafe in downtown Tel Aviv, Nico, in my neighbourhood." Avishai Cohen literally fell for Nitai Hershkovits : barely 20 and despite a cheapo keyboard the youngster reminded him of Chick Corea and Danilo Perez, two illustrious peers the double bass player had been lucky enough to play with."Nitai just swings naturally, with gentle authority; I've rarely seen that with other young pianists. He has something ancient within, a spirit that shines right through the way he tackles standards. You have to know your classics inside out, and love them, to tease the wonder out of them : no point just going over the same old ground, you have to do your own take, make them part of you. Nitai brings a fresh touch, reminding me of Brad Melhdau, without actually making any comparison. He has the same intent of making each song his own.