We Were There (2020)

Reijseger, Sylla, Fraanje

Ernst Reijseger, Harmen Fraanje, Mola Sylla

Pianist Harmen Fraanje returns to NativeDSD Music with his 4th Stereo and Multichannel DSD release.  We Were There is a new DSD 256 Stereo and DSD 256 Multichannel recording on the Just Listen label that features the trio of Ernst Reijseger (Cello, Vocals), Harmen Fraanje (Piano), and Mola Sylla (Vocals, Percussion).

The trio has been described as ‘the perfect amalgam of Jazz, African Songs and Classical Music’ (1). They have released two earlier albums for Winter and Winter and made the music for several films that were directed by well known filmmaker Werner Herzog.

‘Cellist Ernst Reijseger, pianist Harmen Fraanje and Senegalese singer-percussionist Mola Sylla are able to create their own language on stage like no one else; and although it might not be directly understood, it can be felt very clearly’. (2)

The trio makes fierce and beautiful music that is also melancholy and always heavily supported by the excellent voice of their African singer. The exuberant, improvised piano playing of Fraanje and the subtle melodies of Reijseger make for an eclectic, sometimes spiritual whole where nothing is what it seems.”

(1) Quote by North Sea Jazz Festival, Rotterdam, Netherlands (2) Quote by John Kelman, AllAboutJazz, USA

“What has been strange becomes familiar. And what has been familiar acquires the glow of mystery” - Werner Herzog (about the album)

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We Were There (2020)

Reijseger, Sylla, Fraanje

Ernst Reijseger, Harmen Fraanje, Mola Sylla

    Radio Start

Jazz Record of the Day - April 10, 2020

Fabio Ciminiera

    The Voice That Is

Interesting new sounds from my friends at NativeDSD. Check it out.

Doug White

    Jazz Radar

The title We Were There is a reference to the last piece on the album in which Mola Sylla tells a story in the Wolof, and in the tradition, it is always that the listeners (including children) always ask, and… ..were you there? Were You There? We Were There is a beautiful record with 11 diverse and fascinating songs in which jazz, blues, classical and African music merge into a completely unique sound. The sound is intense and the compositions overflow with emotion. There are quite a few songs that get a new life because they were once written for a different ensemble. Albatross van Fraanje, for example, was recorded with Mats Eilertsen 's trio for ECM. At that time the piece had no title and in the studio, Manfred Eicher started to move his arms as if he were flying, listening to Albatross.said. Then it appeared on this record with that name. The infectious Raykwela of Reijseger is an excellent antidepressant; playing three times a day with a lot of volume in gloomy times provides good and danceable comfort music. It was once written for a VPRO Moondive project and performed in Paradiso with ao trombonist Ray Anderson. The three musicians are all storytellers. The songs all originated from improvisations. For example, Bodensee started as a sound improvisation from Fraanje. Very sparingly and gradually he found the harmonies and a kind of melody. It has a bit of a Mahler vibe and since it's written in Germany and Switzerland with the trio, it is called Lake Constance. The album is available today as a DSD digital download. Unfortunately the earlier planned release concerts for the album have been canceled for the time being.

Eddy Westveer[read full review]


Just Play What Your Head Says (Interview)

Rinus van der Heijden[read full review]

We Were There (2020)

Reijseger, Sylla, Fraanje

Ernst Reijseger, Harmen Fraanje, Mola Sylla

Cables: Van den Hul
Digital Converters: Horus, Merging Technologies
Mastering Engineer: Jared Sacks
Microphones: Bruel & Kjaer 4006, Schoeps, AKG
Recording Engineer: Jared Sacks
Recording Location: MCO, Hilversum
Recording Software: Pyramix, Merging Technologies
Recording Type & Bit Rate: DSD 256

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This album is available as ST+MCH download (Stereo + Multichannel)
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JL022: We Were There
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Landscape of the Soul
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Were You There?
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