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Michael Moore - alto saxophone, clarinet, bass clarinet
Harmen Fraanje - piano
Clemens van der Feen - bass
Michael Vatcher - drums/glass harp
Ab Baars - clarinet

’"Fragile" refers to the precariousness of human relationships and our eco-systems. All of these were written during a summer tour of 2007 and are about the caring folks who support the traveling musicians in a variety of ways. What struck me most about this disc is the often laid-back vibe and haunting melodies. I am not familiar with the pianist (Harmen Fraanje) or bassist (Clemens van der Feen) here, although I do know drum wiz Michael Vatcher from his superb work with Jewels & Binoculars, who played in our town this week (4/19/08) and were just incredible. Starting with "Paint as You Like," we enter a lovely, elegant world that is poignant, with some delightfully restive clarinet by Mr. Moore. On two of these pieces, fellow ICP reeds wiz, Ab Baars, is added on clarinet. "Yahoo Day" features just Moore and Baars and is a delightfully quaint piece for two hushed reeds. The title piece, "Fragile" starts with Vatcher playing glass harp, which sounds as if he is rubbing glasses softly. I love the way that Mr. Vatcher insinuates the beat by playing just a minimum of taps of his cymbals. Moore plays some mighty fine bass clarinet on "Bagdad," which has a Monkish melody and elegant piano from Harmen. Every piece here is precious and filled with haunting melodies and is exquisitely played. At nearly 70-minutes long, it does take a bit of patience to appreciate this long dreamy journey. The riches are indeed great when you take the time to savor this entire treasure chest of enchanting songs.’


Like no one else Michael Moore can play a supersweet melody so that it comes across forcefully. He does it immediately in the first number of ‘Fragile’. Disarming it is, but never sentimental . Moore introduces a band with pianist Harmen Fraanje, bassist Clemens van der Feen and, his steady musical partner, drummer, Michael Vatcher. This combination results in a beautiful, fresh sound.

Koen Schouten, De Volkskrant


From left to right: Clemens van der Feen, Michael Moore, Michael Vatcher, Harmen Fraanje.