The New York Times review by Ben Ratliff

CF 286Kaja Draksler – The Lives of Many Others (CF 286)
On the solo record “The Lives of Many Others” (Clean Feed), the young Slovenian pianist Kaja Draksler pulls together information from a century of experimental music and jazz. She also makes rhythm a priority, and reminds you subtly that she knows what she’s doing. The title track is a syncopated percussion piece that starts as a groove brushed on the strings of the piano with, if I had to guess, steel wool, then becomes a jittery and occasionally two-handed improvisation and ends as a twinkling five-note sequence. The middle includes a traditional Slovenian piece, played like an ultraslow hymn; some alert Cecil Taylor-isms, full of tone-clusters and rapid polytonal movement; and, at the end, in a piece called “Delicious Irony,” she moves from downhearted processional to warped, delicate and credible swing improvising. It’s hard, or maybe impossible, to predict where she’s going to take you. That’s not so common from a young musician.


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