The Reason Why Vol. 2 Goran Kajfeš

March 26, 2015

New Internationalist

Hot on the heels of its much-lauded predecessor comes The Reason Why Vol 2, from Swedish trumpeter Goran Kajfeš and a tight band of heavy woodwind and loud electric guitars. Kajfeš, whose parents immigrated to Stockholm from Croatia, is a classically trained jazz musician and the disciplined playfulness of this background is manifest here in glorious fashion. In fact, this album is so playful in its sonic swerves that the listener can be wrong-eared as Kajfeš makes a point of collapsing numerous sonic worlds and genres in on themselves. The name of the band – Subtropic Arkestra – suggests as much in its homage to the cosmic jazz of Sun Ra and to the mélange that makes up Brazilian tropicália. So, there are hints of Ennio Morricone on the ultra-smooth brass, flute and organ lines of ‘Adimiz Miskindir Bizim’ while the dub-heavy beats of the ‘Dokuz Seki/Esmerim’ make you wonder if a piece of 1970s Turkish kitsch hasn’t been fed through a reggae studio. All this is intentional. The latter is an instrumental that slams together two separate pieces: one by contemporary Turkish jazz drummer Okay Temiz and the other an overwrought song from the 1970s Turkish group Beyaz Kelebekler. Vol 2’s instrumentals may use the raw material of other musicians – they form ‘the reason why’ – but its results are inimitably its own.