The quartet is about four years old and has been presenting original music, composed by the band members. The music is of improvisational nature, the emphasis is put on musical communication, spontaneous compositional decisions, where each member of the group is a soloist and an accompanist at the same time. FEATHERY draws its inspiration from diverse musical traditions: 21st Century New Music, Middle-Eastern, Jewish, Eastern-European, jazz, Western classical music.
“We’re trying to not have any particular arrangements of our compositions,” Lena Bloch insists. “Jazz doesn’t have to be risk free – on the contrary, I think risk is a great factor! Because I trust the feeling, professionalism and experience of these people, risk and challenge only facilitate the result. The less safe we all feel, the better it is for the music.”
Feathery released its first album “Heart Knows” in September 2017 on Fresh Sound New Talent. Album received rave reviews worldwide, was listed among top 50 (Jazz Links, Germany-Switzerland), top 100 (NPR Jazz Critics Poll and Tenth Annual International Critics Poll), one of the top jazz releases 2018 (Musica Jazz Magazine, Italy). Feathery was selected to showcase at the 40th Annual National Chamber Music Conference (2018), and was featured in the Winter 2018 issue of Chamber Music Magazine American Ensemble section.
Lena Bloch is an Israeli-American composer and band leader, based in New York City. She has been leading her own chamber groups, performing original music since 1990, in Israel, Europe and the US, including Red Sea Jazz Festival (Israel), Leverkusener Jazz Tage and Ingolstaedter Jazz Tage (Germany), Jazz Lent Maribor (Slovenia), Voronezh Jazz Festival (Russia), Washington Women In Jazz Festival, Vermont Jazz Center Festival, Temple Of The Arts Festival (United States). As a saxophonist she worked with Embryo, Steve Reid, Mala Waldron, Sumi Tonooka, Vishnu Wood, Harvey Diamond and many other American and international band leaders.
In his liner notes to the album, Dan Morgenstern wrote:
“It is a rare and most pleasant surprise to encounter music that is new and different and find it instantly likable. “Collective” is the key word here, to this listener, for this is truly musical togetherness, creating a sound all its own”.
PRESS QUOTES AND LINKS TO ARTICLES
“In spite of its complexity and its intricate layering the music is light as a feather in perception. It leaves such a deep impression that one is quickly tempted to listen to it again.” – Bernard Lefevre, Jazz Halo (Belgium)
“The stunning thing about every performance here is the delicate blend of composed music and spontaneous invention” – Donald Elfman, New York City Jazz Record
“…unwaveringly cohesive…bone-deep gorgeousness…complex, compelling and beautiful, sounds of the highest quality and inspiration laid down by a premier jazz quartet.” – Dan McClenaghan, All About Jazz
“Heart Knows finds Bloch and company exploring a musical realm where concepts and preconceived notions fall by the wayside, making room for the spontaneously composed to be seamlessly entwined with evocative, open compositions. As the quartet pushes forward, they are resolved to continue inviting listeners to participate in that mystery.” – Karl Helander, Chamber Music America Magazine
“Tenor saxist and composer Lena Bloch has a gorgeously warm and mellifluous tone, sort of a mix between Lester Young and Warne Marsh, and she uses it to excellent effect..” – George W. Harris, Jazz Weekly
“All of the music contains ideas and executions that point to Lena Bloch’s ability to write poignant melodies. Each is wonderfully mysterious and atmospheric and every one of the songs has an undertow of raw power that drives their melodies forward. All are extraordinarily crafted compositions, defining a mood in the space of a bar or two, and take precious little time to completely infiltrate the listener’s mind before letting it go. ” – Raul DaGama, Jazz DaGama, Canada