Keno Harriehausen, piano
Karlis Auzins, saxophone
Maya Fridman, cello
Andris Meinig, base
„A remarkable bridging between Jazz and Classical music. (...) a musical understanding where the group sound always marks the focal point, even in improvised passages. Although the gesture of Jazz resonates in it, you clearly hear the rootedness of the quartet’s music in European Classical music.“
- Bayrischer Rundfunk, B. Jugel
The Keno Harriehausen Quartet is a highly vivid example for an ensemble in which multifacetedness of the sum of the individual voices and the unity of the inseparable whole works at its best.
Pianist Keno Harriehausen, saxophonist Karlis Auzins, cellist Maya Fridman and bassist Andris Meinig don"t beat around the bush. From the first note, they make it clear what it"s all about. Subtle vehemence pairs with insistent clarity. This music grabs you with each tone, each breath, each movement. It doesn"t stay out, doesn’t remain neutral, won"t accept the background. Keno Harriehausen and his fellow musicians from Germany, Latvia and Russia take the freedom to absorb the listener to the fullest.
The lineup in itself marks already the unusualness of the band. The combination of tenor saxophone, cello, double bass and piano would rather make you think of a modern chamber ensemble than a Jazz band. But pianist and composer Keno Harriehausen isn"t interested in typical jazz formats anyways.
There have been so many things said about the relationship between composition and improvisation that it almost sounds like a platitude when you acknowledge the quartet for every improvisation being a spontaneous composition at the same time. What separates the approach of the Keno Harriehausen Quartet from similar endeavors is the extreme awareness in every moment of the collective performance. Each of the four members always sense intuitively where they are and what role they play in the flexible whole. Also in freer parts they never improvise into nowhere. The four musicians don’t just know exactly where they want to arrive, but also that they will arrive there. They stay very clear within the music and don’t let external concepts distract them. As high as the degree of complexity may become, everything follows a very natural logic.
„Soundscapes (...) where moments rich in color and of touching beauty emerge... It is as if the musicians would serve their souls on a silver platter. This music is worldencompassing and unhermetic. Hereout, they develop their unique characteristic.”
- Leipziger Volkszeitung, U. Steinmetzger