Valby Summer Jazz: Copenhagen, Denmark, July 6-13, 2013

www.allaboutjazz.com
By JAKOB BAEKGAARD

“In a time of financial crisis, the solution to many festivals seems to be to cut down on the experimental budget and ambitions and focus on familiar names that are sure to attract a sizeable audience. While Valby Summer Jazz, which takes place in Copenhagen and the suburb of Valby, certainly is able to list some of the finest names in modern jazz, the goal of the festival isn’t to present the audience with something they already know. Instead, what you get at the festival are familiar artists in new contexts and a cross-fertilization of genres whose common denominator is the joy and love of music.”

“Context is a keyword. While some experiments have an air of unapproachable intellectuality and exclusion, the festival makes sure that the audience isn’t left behind. Amidst the many challenging sounds, there is always a tune, a melody or a rhythm to hang on to. If anything, the festival has proven that experiments are possible within a mainstream context and you don’t need to belong to a closed community to understand what’s going on.”

VSJ2013-03-1862-1200x800

“Another way of providing context was the fine artist talks that took place before many of the concerts. This was a new and welcome feature that allowed the audience to familiarize itself with the artists in an informal setting where a music journalist interviewed many of the participating musicians. Particularly enlightening was the meeting between the Danish and American composersAnders Koppel and John Blake Jr., who touched upon the similarities in their works. Both emphasized the inherent spirituality in music and the merging of folklore and classical music.”

Læs hele anmeldelsen på http://www.allaboutjazz.com

All Photos: Jannik Knudsen