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Sacred Key

Digital Audio Album

The Sacred Key / Vazesh.

  • Published by Earshift Music — 2021 — 1 online resource (1 sound file).
  • Sales Availability: Buy The Sacred Key on the iTunes Store
  • Library Availability: This item is not available from the Australian Music Centre Library

Featured Australian works

  Work Composer PerformersDuration
Hypolimnion for small jazz ensemble
Recorded/performed at: Sydney Opera House, on 2020.
Hamed Sadeghi, Jeremy Rose and Lloyd Swanton Vazesh 28 mins, 50 sec.
Thermocline for small jazz ensemble
Recorded/performed at: Sydney Opera House, on 2020.
Hamed Sadeghi, Jeremy Rose and Lloyd Swanton Vazesh 22 mins, 46 sec.

Product details

Vazesh perform long-form improvisations inspired by the Persian Radif, and renowned Iranian tar player Hamed Sadeghi's (Eishan Ensemble) music. Featuring Sadeghi alongside Earshift Music founder saxophonist-bass clarinettist Jeremy Rose (Earshift Orchestra, The Vampires) and bassist Lloyd Swanton (The Necks, The catholics) this is an exciting collaboration driven by an exploration of musical discovery. In 2020 Vazesh were invited to reopen the Sydney Opera House's music program with two sold-out shows. This has been beautifully captured and presented on their debut album The Sacred Key.

"Our performances are inspired simultaneously by the vibe, audience, venue, and elements around it," explains Hamed. "This live album captures the spontaneous composition of the group - something that is often difficult to replicate in a studio setting. The tar is a melodically rich instrument, most often used to lead ensembles and orchestras in Iranian classical music, and as I do in my group, Eishan Ensemble. However, in Vazesh, we organically take turns at providing melodic and accompaniment roles. Whatever the music calls for in a particular moment, whether it's providing a melody, a rhythmic part or a layer of texture, the tar is able to achieve that," says Hamed.

Lloyd adds "It's been a gratifying challenge to meld Jeremy's and my principles of spontaneous improvisation with Hamed's deep immersion in the Persian Radif. There are some obvious areas of overlap, not the least being the modal jazz of the 1960s. And Hamed and Jeremy are both - despite their vastly different musical backgrounds - such open-minded musicians. So when we all tune in to the feeling of commonality as we play, and let that be our navigational star, magic always occurs."

"Engaging traditional musical cultures poses potential challenges of authenticity and ethical boundaries," explains Rose. "In Vazesh, we attempt to reduce music to the bare fundamentals, reconstructing it from the ground up, using vestiges of melody, rhythm and pitch from our various backgrounds, as a pathway to uninhibited musical exploration. The music weaves in and out of passages, moving from meditative soundscapes to immersive minimalist inspired riffs. There pertain remnants from each individuals' musical identity - echoes of Sadeghi's Eishan Ensemble, Swanton's work with the Necks, and my experiences with The Vampires and in more avant garde jazz contexts. Improvisation liberates us from the shackles of tradition, allowing us to create something fresh and exciting each performance."

Vazesh formed in 2018 and have performed around Sydney, the Blue Mountains and Wollongong. They were invited to showcase as part of the Sounds Australia delegation at Jazzahead 2021.

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