Born and raised in Tel Aviv, Israel, Avishai Cohen began performing in public in 1988 at age 10, playing his first solos with a big band and eventually touring with the Young Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra to perform under the likes of maestros Zubin Mehta, Kurt Masur and Kent Nagano. Having worked with Israeli folk and pop artists in his native country and appeared on television early on, Avishai arrived as an experienced professional musician when he took up a full scholarship at Berklee College of Music in Boston.
In 1997, the young musician established an international reputation by placing third in the Thelonious Monk Jazz Trumpet Competition. Avishai came of age as a jazz player as part of the fertile scene at Smalls, the storied club in New York’s West Village, where he developed his artistic vision alongside such friends and colleagues as pianist Jason Lindner and bassist Omer Avital. The trumpeter’s artistic stance was informed by the fresh, broad-minded legacy of this vital 21st-century scene. Avishai also toured and recorded with the avant-punk Lemon Juice Quartet, experimenting with effects and collaborating with friends, a common thread throughout his career; the band’s 2002 release Peasant Songs earned praise from the likes of DownBeat, which applauded the album’s “rollicking joi d’vivre.”
“Triveni II” it’s his 6th solo album, follow up of the 2010’s “Introducing Triveni”. This is definitively a delicatessen for any Miles Davis fan!
Reviewing Triveni live at the Jazz Standard, The New York Times praised Avishai as “an extravagantly skilled trumpeter, relaxed and soulful. . . deftly combining sensitivity and flair.” The trio’s debut album, Introducing Triveni, set Avishai’s originals alongside standards, including classics by Duke Ellington and John Coltrane. New York City Jazz Record called the album “easily one of the best jazz recordings of 2010,” and DownBeat listed it in the magazine’s year-end top 10. Although Triveni is a vehicle for high-energy improvisation, Avishai says: “My approach to this trio has been to challenge ourselves to stay lyrical and true, to balance freedom with self-restraint. The discipline of that is an art itself.” Both Triveni albums were recorded in the same blockbuster two-day session in Brooklyn, with Triveni II featuring not only more exciting originals by Avishai but inspired interpretations of tunes by Dizzy Gillespie, Charles Mingus, Don Cherry and Ornette Coleman. One of the Coleman pieces had never been recorded before, with the iconic saxophonist teaching the tune directly to the trumpeter. With his clarion tone, harmonic sophistication, playful rhythmic sensibility and ability to play both inside and outside the tradition, Avishai has become a favorite of several veteran jazz stars. Italian trumpet sage Enrico Rava has called him “my favorite young trumpeter.”
He was voted a Rising Star in the 2012 DownBeat Critics Poll – has earned renown as a musician with an individual sound and a questing spirit, an ever-creative player-composer open to multiple strains of jazz and active internationally as a leader, co-leader and sideman. The New York Times described him as “an assertive, accomplished trumpeter with a taste for modernism.” Avishai played a headlining set at the 2011 Newport Jazz Festival, leading his bold, thrilling trio Triveni with double-bassist Omer Avital and drummer Nasheet Waits. Anzic Records will release the trio’s second album, Triveni II – Avishai’s sixth recording as a leader – in October 2012. The trumpeter also records and tours the world as part of the prestigious SF Jazz Collective, as he does with The 3 Cohens Sextet – the hit family band with his sister, clarinetist-saxophonist Anat, and brother, saxophonist Yuval. With The 3 Cohens, Avishai has twice headlined the hallowed Village Vanguard, as well as appeared on the cover of the January 2012 issue of DownBeat. He is also co-leader of Third World Love, a longstanding multicultural venture with bassist Omer Avital, pianist Yonatan Avishai and drummer Daniel Freedman.
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Released on 30 October 2012
Avishai Cohen: Trumpet
Omer Avital: Bass
Nasheet Waits: Drums
Triveni II is the follow-up to Introducing Triveni, which New York City Jazz Record called “easily one of the best jazz recordings of 2010.” Both albums were recorded in the same blockbuster two-day session in Brooklyn, with Triveni II featuring not only exciting originals by Cohen but inspired interpretations of tunes by Dizzy Gillespie, Charles Mingus, Don Cherry and Ornette Coleman. Sparks fly on each of the 10 viscerally recorded tracks as Cohen, Avital and Waits engage in interplay that is as fleet as it is muscular, as progressive as it is full of soul.
Triveni, a Sanskrit word that means “the place where three sacred rivers meet,” is an accurate descriptor for this bold trio – noticed Dan Bilawsky in his review at All About Jazz.
The spirit of Miles Davis is there throughout and this is a fabulous joyride of improvisations and sparkling post-bop in it’s best form. Kind of can’t stop listening it – definitively a must have!!