CLASSICAL OR JAZZ? Yvonne Troxler: Brouhaha, Andrew Violette: Sonatas for Cello and Clarinet

Innova Records put out a wide range of sounds; pretty impressive for a label from Toe Head Country Minnesota. Actually, these people up there have a hot little jazz community. These two latest releases veer towards the more artsy side of jazz, trying to meld classical and almost cinematic themes together in a contemporary context.


No, Yvonne Troxler’s Brouhaha is not a humorous beer company; It’s the title song in this collection of compositions by the pianist as she leads the Glass Farm Ensemble. You’ve got lots of percussionists, flute (Margaret Lancaster), bass clarinet (Amy Advocat), violin and viola (Gregor Kitzis), percussion (Bill Trigg), then some guitar, sax and more percussion.  Some of the material, like “Penn 1” has some luminous and airy woodwinds, while “Shergotty” and “Kaleidoskop” can include spacious percussion discussions and some guitar, sax and piano thrown in.  The viola/violin  pieces are a bit on the experimental/indie film soundtrack side, making this more of a background session for wine tasting than anything else.


Andrew Violette’s music gets a bit more serious, as the eight piece sonata for cello and piano is mostly 21st century classical music. There are a few breaks in the panoramic mood with “Glorious Bells” and “Cha-Cha with Refrain” but the general theme is thoughtful and tensile chamber music. The sonata for clarinet and piano is a three piece collection of some warm sounding reeds rustling with the graceful ivories of the leader. Accessible and enjoyable for long haired fans.


Innova Records

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