The new quartet turned out to match very well - interview with Anna Kaluza

Piotr Wojdat
Autor zdjęcia: 
mat. promocyjne

In Poland you are mostly known from the album "Tone Hunting", which was released in 2012. What do you remember from the sessions to this album?

Anna Kaluza: We were in Artur‘s and Kuba‘s studio at OPT Wroclaw for three days. They have great equipment and they are both very experienced in recording improvised music. We played for many hours, having breaks with very good food and strong coffee...

When did you met Rafal Mazur, Artur Majewski and Kuba Suchar? Have you listened to their music before gigs and sessions to this album?

AK: I first met Rafal in Krakow, perhaps in 2010. We played a gig with our mutual friend Noel Taylor. A year later, Rafal, Artur and Kuba came through London and Berlin (among other cities) as part of a Polish experimental music ensemble. The idea was to meet and play with local musicians and I - since I was living in London doing a master‘s degree - was invited to perform with Rafal and other improvisers at Café Oto. That evening was also the first time I heard Kuba‘s and Artur‘s duo Microcollective. I enjoyed it and was quite impressed. A week later we also played in Berlin - this was my first time with all three musicians, Kuba, Artur and Rafal.


This album was released by one of the most prestigious labels on the european music scene. How is it to work with the Clean Feed crew?

AK: I can not really comment on this because all the work and cooperation with cleanfeed was done by Artur. He already knew Pedro, the founder and organizer. I remember the process took quite a long time, a big effort and a lot of patience - but eventually it all turned out very well.

After eight years you've released another album with Rafal Mazur and Artur Majewski. Could you tell me how did it happen and what was the main idea for this record?

AK: Soon after our album Tone Hunting had been released, Artur and Kuba had some very severe arguments about their duo and their different opinions became so strong that they decided to quit their cooperation after many years. This was a big disappointment for our quartet since the combination was no longer possible.

Of course we wanted to continue playing together in some way, so Artur suggested a new drummer, Vasco Trilla, who lives in Barcelona. We first met for a recording session in Zielona Gora in December 2016. Again Artur had arranged everything. He works at the university there. He also mixed this beautiful recording.

The new quartet turned out to match very well, we all felt very good and comfortable playing and spending time together.

I also still love playing with Kuba. We work as a duo now and also made recordings, which are not yet released.



On "The Night Of The Swift" Kuba Suchar was replaced by Vasco Trilla. What kind of drummer is he and what kind of person?

AK: Vasco is a great drummer, very innovative and inspiring. He uses a lot of toys and other objects which surprised me with many fresh and interesting sounds. He can be very groovy and at the same time he is not too loud. Besides, I recommend Vasco for walking around Zielona Góra together and having a coffee..

I know it's hard to make plans right now. But are you thinking of any concerts with Rafal, Artur and Vasco?

AK: Of course we hope to play together soon. But as you say, it‘s difficult at the moment and I think we have to wait a bit before we can really make new plans. Besides corona, Berlin is a difficult place for getting well payed gigs, especially for bands which are mostly not Berlin-based (as our quartet).

Anyway, I‘m very happy about our new album and would like to say thanks to Artur, of course also to Rafal and Vasco, and to Maciej Karlowski from the FSR label.

You are a founder of Berlin Improvisers Orchestra. Is the orchestra still active?

AK: The Berlin Improvisers Orchestra is not at all playing at the moment. For large ensembles it’s especially difficult in these restricted times. Our last gigs were canceled, or hopefully only postponed - we have to wait and see. It‘s even difficult to just meet up for a rehearsal because there are too many players in the group (around 30), some also a bit older and probably in the corona risk-group. We also have members from abroad in the band (from Sicily, Spain and England for example) and travelling is not really possible this year.

What are your other projects on which you are working right now?

AK: I just recorded a duo session with bassist Jan Roder. We would like to release it and are working on the mix and mastering now. I mainly work with my German groups at the moment since I can‘t really travel. With the so-called Kaluza Quartet (Christof Thewes (trb), Jan Roder (b), Kay Lübke (dr) and myself) I just played on a small jazz festival in Darmstadt and we are also working on an album to be released soon.