By Layi Olatunji

Many times when I am asked to do a song’s review, what I do is to listen to the track without glancing at the title so as not to be influenced by it.

This is simply because interpretation in art refers to the attribution of meaning to a work. A point on which people often disagree is whether the artist’s intention is relevant to the interpretation of the work. I have used such an approach in listening to this album, considering each track with an open mind to listen to what the song says to me, the emotions it evokes and whether I am still the same person I was before listening to the song.

Popularly known as “Veeesax”, Victor Ajayi is a prolific musician and multi-instrumentalist whose passion for the brass has made him to specialise on the saxophone family of wood wind instruments. With a core genre of Afro smooth jazz, Veeesax has featured in more than 10 albums (including ‘Worship Companion’) and performed in more than 30 stages across Nigeria and the United Kingdom within the last five years. His latest offering is a two-track jazz album titled, “Life’s Journey” currently streaming on global digital platforms including Spotify, Amazon, iTunes, Apple Music etc.

The album’s first track is paradoxically titled, ‘Peaceful Storm’ and it aptly starts out with soothing vocalese and guitars only to be disrupted by a searing and brassy trumpet, which is immediately silenced by the full, breathy and authoritative sound of Veeesax’s saxophone.

The track has a minimalist feel and the masterful use of tension and release that tells the story of peace within a storm.

‘Not Alone’ is a smooth jazz, gospel-infused track. The arrangement of this track and the use of various instrumental voicings and movements reveal Veeesax’s background in a church choir and orchestra.  He has been part of the Faith Tabernacle choir brass team (Living Faith Church, Canaanland, Ota, Ogun State, Nigeria) for over a decade, and made over 1,000 appearances with the team within the last 10 years, performing in front of over 100,000 live audiences week-in/week-out. He has also championed and arranged at least 10 brass orchestras that performed at Shiloh, an international event that welcomes over one million participants annually.

Veeesax names the incomparable John Coltrane as one of his musical influences and this resonates throughout his album. I am reminded of ‘A Love Supreme’ because ‘Life’s Journey’ is more of a complete musical work in two movements, which speaks of the human experience. You will never really be alone as long as you have Veeesax’s music to help you find peace in the storms, which are quite inevitable in life’s journey.

The post Veeesax: When minimalism meets jazz appeared first on The Sun Nigeria.

Source: news