Niels Tausk is most at home playing in a club or at a festival with his quartet or quintet, with some the best accompanists in Europe, like his longtime bassist Jos Machtel. The repertoire is vast, ranging from beauties from the American songbook or the Brazillian repertoire, of which he plays many hundreds, to originals and compositions by contempory jazz greats like Bert Joris or Tom Harrell.
He has played in most clubs in Holland, and festivals including the North sea jazz festival, and many well known stages in Europe.
His working band, the Tausktet plays many fresh originals, and the line up is:
Niels Tausk - trp
Jasper van Damme - alto
Koen Schalkwijk - piano
Jos Machtel - bass
David Puime - drums
WIZARDS OF OZ
Durk Hijma guitar, Joan Terol Amigo drums, Jos Machtel bass en Niels Tausk trumpet.
Joe Magnarelli about their live CD at Murphy's Law:
Recording in a studio setting these days, musicians tend to lean on technology to refurbish' or rectify their performance. After listening to this new live recording, I am reminded of the dedication and perseverance that is necessary to be able to communicate beautiful music in an well executed manner, LIVE. Niels Tausk, and his brilliant quartet has done just that, here with his third recording as a leader. Niels flaunts a warm tone on trumpet and flugelhorn (even on Yabadabado time) and a lyrically inspired method of improvisation throughout the CD, guitarist Durk Hijma provides more of an open canvas for Niels to create, and Joan Terol Amigó (drums) and Jos Machtel (bass) embody good vibrations throughout.
Niels and Durk start off swinging great solo's on the lead off track, an up tempo, hard bop tune by Tom Macintosh, "The Cup Bearers",
"If I only had a Heart" may be Niels best effort, as he offers a sophisticated solo with a soulful expression. "The Roach" is a happy swinger that flirts with a 2 feel, a good vehicle for the quartet as a whole, and also a peek into Niels love for Louis Armstrong, as he leans towards the 20th century's trumpet genius for some of his phrasing ideas.
The classic "Over the Rainbow" is again a great vehicle for the quartet to show it's versatility going between a vibrant 6/8 feel, and some hard 4/4 swing. A fresh version of an old classic. “Stil wordt het in mij" a waltz number that really highlights the warm interplay between Niels and Durk Hijma. They both hold down the chord changes while at the same time exploring some more modern sounds, never losing the lyricism displayed throughout.
" Blues For Tom" is hard swinging 12 bar blues with a twisting chord progression that has a Coltrane vibe, great solos on this one, the blues is never lost throughout, and some nice drum trades from Joan.
No doubt " Yabadabado" will be the 'Go to' track when you're feeling down, and need a infusion of "YA BABY!!" Great performance by the cats on this Funky/Groovy tune. Niels shows off his 'wa wa' prowess, Durk flaunts his versatility as he rips a great solo, and Joan and Jos take care of business !
"It ain't Necessarily so" reminds me of Miles and Jimmy Cobb, another happy feeling take that features Niels carving out the chord changes lyrically, and inspired.
This is really a great record date, no fixes, no overdubs, just honest music communicated with love and brilliance. Enjoy !!!