We already talked on these pages about Aman Jagwani and the title single from his latest album This Place. With it, Jagwani showed that “he’s capable of crafting something that fits into the ‘smooth’ category while still delivering the substance of quality jazz and soul.”
Still, some might think that making such a judgment based on just a single (track) could be a bit misleading. What if the album actually misses the mark, simply slipping into too much smoothness and very little substance?
Well, listening to the album in full, the possible worries are quickly dispelled. As somebody who lives and works in India, where this album was recorded and produced, Jagwani seems not to care much about what works on the commercially very viable smooth jazz scenes in the countries like the US and England. Actually, that is not really true. What he doesn’t do is stick to the standardized, ready-made smooth jazz formulas. But he certainly wants to make his music as accessible to a wider audience as possible, without sacrificing those elements that comprise good jazz or jazz-soul if you will.
Jagwani doesn’t shy away either for more complex time signatures, good jazz soloing or excellent vocals of his guest vocalist Anubha Kaul. Tracks like“Elastic Slumber” cover such ground all by themselves.
But with all the complexity and improvisation that is present here, Jagwani doesn’t forget that in the end, the music is something that requires listeners and tracks like “Palm Tree” or any other here, for that matter, do include that appealing smoothness, but never forsaking musicality or falling into a trap of a set formula.
“This Place” the single promised, This Place the album delivered.
Aman Jagwani – ‘This Place’ Reaction
Aman Jagwani's album 'This Place' delivers exactly on the promise delivered by the single of the same name - smooth jazz that defies standard smooth jazz formulas.