Live concert review

LIVE CONCERT REVIEW: Aleksandra and The Belgian Sweets

“Pop, reggae, trip hop, big band, jazz and elements of Polish folk were all musical inspiration during the Saturday’s concert at Jazz Café, London. The sensual atmosphere—created by the clear, delicate but strong voice of Polish singer Aleksandra Kwaśniewska as she performed ballads—put the gathered audience into a melodic trance. A full room, relaxed atmosphere and social meetings have been the characteristics of Saturday concerts in Jazz Café for a year now – a place which promotes young jazz talents like Ola and her band The Belgian Sweets, featuring: Peter Ryckeboer (piano), Koen Kimpe (double bass), and Niels Delvaux (drums).

During the Saturday concert we heard 14 songs (sung in Polish and English). The style of the vocalist – making each song rich with artistic interpretation and message – somewhat resembles the manner of singing of jazz diva Stacey Kent. Beautiful and spacious ballads, all of them different, all of them gifted with the special “aura” and bossa novas ideally showed the atmosphere in which Ola Kwaśniewska seemed to feel very relaxed. The musicians accompanying the vocalist showed their talents during the instrumental parts, proving their musical sensitivity, mutual understanding and wonderful cooperation.

The young vocalist and her Belgian band are already working on a new album, for which recordings will start in August. It should be even closer to Polish hearts as it will contain the poems of Polish poet Halina Poświatowska. It is hard to imagine that music of Kwasniewska may be even more spacious, warm and sensual – the artist says that the second album will be like that because of the incredible lyrics of the Polish poet.

“Poems of Halina Poświatowska are an incredible inspiration for me. They are delicate, sensual, written by a woman, who during writing those poems was the same age as me. I feel the world around me very similarly to the poet. Although in her poetry motif of death happens often –I try to use those light texts, those ‘pearls,’ not necessarily speaking about love. The melodic line just happens instantly, the songs are ‘born’ themselves, says vocalist, adding that the next album will be definitely more mature, more spacious and with deeper inspiration of trip-hop.

Saturday’s concert of Ola Kwaśniewska and The Belgian Sweets did not only show the talent of the Polish vocalist and her accompanying musicians. Apart from beautifully chosen lyrics and sensual melodic lines, the artists gained from the songs something more. Something which is the quintessence of jazz – emotions – accompanied the listeners and musicians beyond the composed sounds, beyond the written lyrics…”

Aleksandra Wisniowska

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