Julie Campiche Quartet returns with 2nd album 'You Matter' & single 'Aquarius + UK live shows
22 September 2022
Julie Campiche Quartet make a return with their sophomore album ‘You Matter’, which comes out 4th November on ENJA Records. ‘You Matter’ is an experimental body of work in avant-garde jazz that has the magical, unexpected and emotive sounds of Julie Campiche’s harp at its core, with a compelling and hopeful message to the world around themes of climate change, refugee crisis, the patriarchy and human identity in these dark and troubled times.
The first single from the album is ‘Aquarius’, which comes out today on all digital platforms. With its compelling, emotional, striving rhythm and quietly building urgency, ‘Aquarius’ is a 10-minute opus, named after the boat which was not allowed to save refugees from drowning.
Across seven epic tracks on this new album, the Quartet, comprised of Campiche, Manu Hagmann (bass), Clemens Kuratle (drums) and Leo Fumagalli (saxophone) have developed as one voice into new, visionary, conceptual, yet intimate territory, with electronic effects, heightened orchestral arrangements, more expressive instrumentation and ever more complex musical and harmonic structures. The new album is cohesive in its concept and takes the listener on a meaningful sonic journey.
Through Campiche’s early experience in jazz, classical electronic and avant-garde experimentation, this harp jazz pioneer has developed an authentic, extremely diversified style. Her musical language is an on-going process of combining thoughts on the world with musical innovation, spanning jazz, classical, electronic and avant-garde experimentation, to infuse her music with an urgent fragility.
Campiche first founded the Julie Campiche Quartet in 2016 and brought together some of the most promising Swiss musicians of their generation to create an ensemble that stood apart. An ensemble which combines electronic effects from their instrument with the acoustic space, plus organic sounds, field recordings and complex forms, seeing them experiment with progressive jazz and create their own sonic signature. The quartet toured for three years and became a part of the European live circuit, before making its debut in 2020 with critically acclaimed album ‘Onkalo’, meaning ‘cave’ in Finnish, a title inspired by an underground Finnish reservoir used to dump radioactive waste. With its sounds of spiritual jazz, or ‘chiaroscuro’, the album concept reflected Campiche’s desire to connect her music with wider world issues.
Campiche and the Quartet have developed the sound of their second album over months. The process of creation over the past year became the album ‘You Matter’ and this new music carries the five years of experience that the ensemble spent on the road. With ‘You Matter’, the Quartet offer new works that transcend technical complexity: ‘The Other’s Share’ inspired by the idea of everyday life getting in the way of self-care, to the mesmerising call to action of ‘Fridays Of Hope’ with its sampled speech of iconic climate activist Greta Thunberg, the moody spiritual jazz of ‘Parenthese’ signifying the times we put off taking action, the interplay and enigmatic sounds of ‘Lies’, the atmospheric ‘The Underestimated Power’ which elevates the underrated woman and subverts the patriarchy, and finally the captivating closing track ‘Utopia’.
Julie Campiche explains “There is a great flow and musical confidence between us four, which allows the collective to give more space to the genesis of the music. The sound of the quartet thus broadens its horizon, while remaining faithful to the energy and roots initiated by myself. The four of us have pushed back technical limits and taken more risks together…We can feel overwhelmed by everything that is happening in the world, especially the climate crisis in our lifetime and what it means for us all. So we can lose the sense that our actions matter or have consequence. The idea is that we can re-connect with ourselves and the feeling of us having an impact in the world and that our actions are important and meaningful. What I’m trying to do as an artist is to make the link between the very big and the very little, the intimate and the societal. You Matter, so don’t give up, we can all make a difference.”
With another single to follow ahead of the album release, Julie Campiche Quartet will follow the album by bringing their visually stunning live performance to the UK for three UK live dates at Cambridge Modern Jazz on 17 November, Vortex Club as part of London Jazz Festival on 18 November and Black Mountain Jazz Club, as part of wall2wall Jazz Festival, Abergavenny on 19 November.
You Matter will be released 4 November on digital and CD. The single ‘Aquarius’ is available to stream now here.
1.Aquarius / 2. The Other’s Share / 3. Fridays Of Hope / 4. Parenthese / 5. Lies / 6. The Underestimated Power / 7. Utopia
17 Nov - Cambridge Modern Jazz 18 Nov - Vortex Club, London Jazz Festival, tickets here 19 Nov – Black Mountain Jazz Club, wall2wall Jazz Festival, Abergavenny