Active since: December 1, 2006
AZURE A Musical Spark The story of Azure starts in 2006 when a pianist and a guitar player meet at a spontaneous jam session. Immediately sensing a musical spark, they decide to collaborate. They get together with 2 friends, start composing and gigging, and call the band Azure.
When She Smiles After their first big concert, at The Hague Jazz, they decide to work towards a recording. In june 2008 the quartet records their debut album 'When She Smiles', which holds nine original pieces inspired by love. The self-released album finds wide critical acclaim in both the US and the Netherlands. Azure's compositions, eclecticism, and unique sound get a lot of praise....
“The band really impressed me… great tunes, great interplay…” - Hein van de Geyn
Jazzism, nr. 3 2009 “Azure has guts and a very individual, mature sound. ...from all the attention for quality of timbre and detailed interplay, the group easily switches into overdrive” (Mark Stroeks)
Jazz Magazine, nr. 2 2009 “a headstrong lot... it’s primarily the combination of melody and harmony that makes the group’s work interesting. Azure’s music is accessible, a bit dreamy and covers you like a warm blanket” (Angelique van Os)
Den Haag Centraal, may 2009 “Azure is a group keep your eyes on... From contemporary, romantic and melodious to full out rocking. It’s difficult to compare them to others and that’s a quality” (Bert Jansma)
AllAboutJazz, march 2009 “Both Blanchard and Schneemann are strong proponents of their instruments. They play with an active imagination opening several interesting doors... The blend is juicy and delightful.” (Jerry D’Souza)
Jazzflits, nr. 7.07 2009 “Especially the interplay between guitar and piano is nicely done... there is always harmony in the compositions and in the way they’re executed... The solo piano piece ‘Berceuse pour Maëlise’ is a gripping, cinematic drama. Blanchard takes the listener to a dreamworld” (Peter J. Korten)
Jazzenzo, march 2009 “the group is capable of writing strong melodies and arranging them with taste and skill. Especially Blanchard is a great talent as a pianist and composer. Tracks like 'Ballade pour une Pâquerette' , 'A Mon Amour' and 'Berceuse pour Maëlise' have touching passages and 'RnP' lingers nicely in your ear after listening” (Mischa Andriessen)
Musicweb International, march 2009 “to my ears there are no weak numbers on this excellent debut disc... ‘B-Y-You’ is a strong number, coming close to the ECM qualities of some pretty big names” (Dominy Clements)
Jazzreview, april 2009 “Azure produce dimension in their music so the melodic patterns spring out at the listener... They take the listener on a fantastical journey through their recording, When She Smiles.” (Susan Frances)
Jazzreview, may 2009 “The CD has a certain timeless quality to it... Having played together for awhile, each of the four members of Azure is aware of how much space to give, when to step forward, and when to lay back. This by-product of familiarity and mutual respect yields excellent results.” (Randall Parrish)
When She SmilesAzuremusic
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