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Swedish jazz trio casts a spell

He is considered one of the great storytellers of Scandinavian jazz and is – still – an insider tip: Joel Lyssarides. Outside his home country of Sweden, the 30-year-old pianist, who owes his last name to Greek roots, is probably only known to insiders. He is already a star on the streaming service Spotify, and his music has been viewed over 50 million times in recent years.

Jazz – for Joel Lyssarides this is not a stylistic corset, but a language, a vocabulary on the way to a very personal expression. Lyssarides lives secluded in a house in the forest, a good half hour outside Stockholm. He prefers to compose at night, in silence, without distractions. A state that is reflected in his music, which is strongly influenced by space, sound and mood.

This atmosphere is perfectly staged in the new program “Stay Now” by the highly concentrated, differentiated, subtle interplay of Joel Lyssarides with bassist Niklas Fernqvist and drummer Rasmus Blixt. The spectacular in this music is hidden in the vast majority of moments in the intimate, quiet, in the moment of focused pause. The three young musicians share an enormous sensitivity and expressiveness, based on a vocabulary that draws equally from European classical music, jazz on both sides of the Atlantic, and the depth and accessibility of great songwriting.

Everything flows and vibrates, nothing seems intentional or contrived, one hears in every note a natural understanding of the boundlessness of music – a perfect start for the concert year 2023 in Draiflessen.

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