Enrique Haneine, Instants of Time

by Sylvannia Garutch

Enrique Haneine was raised in Mexico, immersed in Latin groove, and heavily underpinned with classical and jazz studies.  It is a powerful sound, the lineage traces its way into the ancient world, a history of music that he carries of his life story.
Haneine has won international jazz competitions and received multiple music awards, his reputation as a brilliant artist and talented arranger are well deserved, his repertoire has evolved and matured into the realm of free jazz, standards and Latin jazz forays. Ranging from his past role as music director for Ricky Martin and for numerous productions, performing and collaborating with some of the greatest jazz musicians, a winner of the Jane Jarvis Jazz Competition, voted All About Jazz New York’s Best of 2005 Albums of the Year, Grammy Nominated for his performance on Best Latin Jazz Album 2013.  Though his experiences are vast Haneine has had a desire and pull to explore upon free improvisations, founded in Jazz, Latin, and Lebanese traditions, linking the dots from the Cedars of Lebanon, through the open veins of the beloved Latin America, to the melting-pot of New York City.

Enter his most recent recording INSTANTS OF TIME which includes 13 original compositions that take you through a journey with free improvisations founded on the Jazz, Latin and middle eastern flavors, the sound is innovative, offering extended rhythmic groupings, odd meters, fascinating intervallic melodies and contemporary harmonies serving as a point of departure and creating a setting where free-jazz is the centerpiece of sound.
The listen is filled with complex tunes like “Bordeaux” offering a dark, but sensual sound.  Trumpeter, Lex Samu has a warm, yet commanding sound, while bassist Carlo de Rosa creates a driving Latin theme with drummer Haneine adding to the sensuality of the rhythms.   “Angularity Within” utilizes a muscular 3 horn sound, with shifting rhythms and the chemistry of the ensemble is in full view.  Haneine’s writing skills really shine and reveal this is not a rehash of what you have heard so many times before, this is the progression of where jazz should be going and thankfully Haneine is driving that forefront with his crisp ideas and sharpened ideas. Another highlight for me was “East Side of Lloyd” flavored with a Middle Eastern tinge, this is where Haneine’s heritage comes shining through.  The sound is exotic and the rhythm is instantly infectious. Soprano saxophonist, Catherine Sikora creates eccentric stabs to eventuate the pulse of the tune.  Haneine invokes ethnic percussive sounds to truly give this track propulsion. 
13 tracks of non-stop rhythms and odd meters, the afro-Cuban clave and time signatures like 17/4, 21/4, 29/8, and beyond, which may seem unusual, but somehow with genius Haneine makes it seem effortless.  This is what is so unique about this album, not only the supreme musicianship in play, but the clever well laced together ideas and deep harmonic complexities, that engage the listener to deepen their ear and experience.  This is not a light listen; thankfully this is truly improvisational jazz and its hard core.  In truth, I simply have had enough of the re-hash of so many background jazz offerings, this is an eye opening experience that has enlivened my faith, that jazz does have hope in the next generation and it is in the form of INSTANTS OF TIME.  Well done, well played, and highly recommended.  And to the sweetest publicist in the world – thank GOD you nicely kept nudging me, as this was truly a wondrous listen.

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