Yakou Tribe: 100% Results: Release Information
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Release Date: 22.02.2013
TT Catalogue No: 4581
Yakou Tribe - 100% Results
Where jazz ends for other bands, is where it begins for Yakou Tribe!
Great rock-bands celebrate their big anniversaries after decades, sometimes even after half a century, with a dozen albums or so. In jazz this is different. Jazz bands meet for one album and if it goes particularly well and the egos are half-way in tune with each other this might lead to a second production. So when a jazz-group releases four solid albums with the same line-up of musicians, this is quite the sensation. Especially when this happens in the great boiler Berlin. The quartet Yakou Tribe however, has never had a problem breaking with the customs of jazz. “100% Results” is in fact the fourth record to date of the Berliner band and it celebrates once more the colorful, vibrant life.
No less than four years have passed, since the release of “Rituals”, the last production of the four Berliners. In pop-music one would call it a reunion after such a long time-out, but in the jazz-scene the clocks tick differently. Guitarist Kai Brückner, saxophonist Jan von Klewitz, bassist Johannes Gunkel and drummer Rainer Winch had in no way lost touch nor sought the much cited distance from one another. They get along much too well for that – which can be heard on this record just as much as on all the previous. No, they have been making music together all this time, they just haven’t performed live as much. It was a phase of reflection, as Kai Brückner explains. “This way we just had more time to concentrate on certain aspects of our music. The work on the record itself didn’t take any longer than for our previous CDs, but it definitely paid off, that we had already played the material longer and more often before we went into the studio.”
Right! The songs on “100% Results“ are instantly catchy. It’s not about solo-skirmish, but about singing together on the instruments. That’s not to say that the Yakou tribe seemed erratic or unfocused; quite the contrary. The band’s true-to-life hybrid of virulent jazz-rock and sensual soundscaping was always very pointed and straight, to stick with the jazz-jargon. But never before has this band sounded symbiotic, dense and collectively interwoven in their individual intentions to such an extent as on “100% Results”. From the first to the last note it spreads a positive mood that won’t leave, even when the music has long faded. While the first albums of Yakou Tribe still had a taste of urban longing for pastoral distance, the blatant happiness of life in the city manifests itself on the new record.
Surely, all four members have experienced various personal developments and changes in the past six years, that obviously have an influence on the band-sound. But, as Brückner states, there was only one single significant decision regarding their music. “We have shifted the song-oriented, more produced character of our recordings in the direction of a more direct, live-recorded jazz-feeling. There is only one song with overdubs, everything else is played live just like at a concert. This time we managed without fiddling around in post-production.”
The Yakou tribe appears fresh and new but nevertheless the band still stands
a hundred percent by the music that has always been characteristic for them.
A distinctive trait of Brückner, von Klewitz and co. is that they find a
new agreement between continuity and change for every track. They no longer call
for international comparison, but rather define their own brand essence: short,
accessible jazz-songs between restrained melancholy and unobtrusive cheerfulness,
that unfold their own pictures. Four musicians, who are not playing together
because they are at the mercy of each other, but because they wouldn’t
want it any other way. This power, this passion and this fun are inevitably transmitted
to the listener. Yakou Tribe is an alliance of tale-telling singer/songwriters,
who exchange their lyrics for individual sound. Above all they know how to let
go. If a band that has been playing together for over ten years records their
fourth album with the same passion and decisiveness as if it were their first,
then they have done everything, and truly everything right.