Dominik Strycharski

Flauto Dolphy
Fundacja Sluchaj FSR 03/2017

By Ken Waxman

Proficient playing alto saxophone, bass clarinet and especially flute in Charles Mingus’ and John Coltrane’s groups, Jazz avatar Eric Dolphy (1928-1964)’s compositions and improvisations are saluted by Dominik Strycharski here. Moving confidentially though the eight tracks during a live session that leaves little space for miscues, the Polish polymath makes unaccompanied interpretations of the Dolphy canon using B soprano, alto, tenor and bass recorders, the most normal musical showcase.

Such Dolphy classics as “Gazelloni” – named for the classical flutist – and “Hat and Beard” – saluting Thelonious Monk – are sophisticatedly reconstituted. That’s because Strycharski’s technical skills allow him to build up the second piece from atom-sized bites that are both percussive and triple-tongued, to a selection of dissonant pitches. Meanwhile Gazelloni divides into exploding mukltiphonics seemingly squalled from more than one recorder at once, only to descend into delicately tonal coda. Screeching atonality that brings out the instruments’ pseudo metallic buzz on “Iron Man” confirms Strycharski’s skilful appropriation of both solo and accompaniment functions. Meanwhile his own composition, the concluding Sam, sets up ecstatic airy whorls and whirls that are as vocalized as they are played, yet still manage to capture and salute the melodic as well as the militant attributes of Dolphy’s art.

-For The Whole Note November 2017