Photograph by Loreta Tale

Can you tell us about your new album?

(un)balanced is my quintet’s debut album, coming out on the 1st of May.

It features incredible musicians whom I met during my studies at the Guildhall School of Music and have been fortunate to play with for the last couple of years, Simeon May on saxophone and bass clarinet, Cody Moss on piano, Kinzan on bass, Adam Merrell on drums.

During the recording session we were also joined by a very special guest, Mark Lockheart, who added his absolutely unique sound and improvisational language to two of the tracks.

Music from (un)balanced is my reflection on the overwhelming deluge of information which we all have to deal with every day and my own journey to find a healthy mental balance on different levels.

It is definitely very much inspired by my move to London, the city I find incredible and fascinating but also sometimes too intense and absurd.

The album combines our varied influences, ranging from traditional jazz to the Scandinavian improvised scene and contemporary New York jazz. The tracks are linked by a series of solo and duet improvised “studies” which are short, fully improvised pieces, bringing the listener closer to our personal experiences and musical voices.

The album launch is at the Vortex Jazz Club on May 1st with special appearances by the great Mark Lockheart as well as a fantastic vocalist Aitziber Cofré Real.

Tickets available here

What other projects are you currently involved with?

I am currently one of the curators of the Vortex Jazz Club’s “Whirlpool” monthly concert series which is focused on showcasing new music and young artists. The project is a really great initiative which gave us, a group of recent graduates from London music collages, a platform to explore free improvisation as well as to try out our new compositions. Keep an eye on upcoming “Whirlpool” events! All the info available on the Vortex’s website.

I’ve been also recently working with Irka Zapolska, a phenomenal Polish vocalist, who has a distinctive approach to voice in a free improv scenario. We’re thinking about recording something later this year, but we’ll see how it goes.

What are you currently listening to and what was the last CD or download you bought?

I always like to look into current releases, so I’ve been recently listening to a few new(-ish) albums.

“Relief Party” is the latest album by one of my absolute favourite guitarists and composer, Reinier Baas. That’s also the record I have bought most recently, in a rather sad and soulless digital form due to the current lack of a CD player… The compositions as well as the guitar playing on this one are just so imaginative, interesting and a bit absurd, full of Reinier’s signature humour in them.

Ella Zirina’s solo guitar album “Unraveler” is another record I’ve been checking out recently. Beautiful, creative writing and outstanding (a bit scary for me, as a guitarist) technique. I find her playing particularly inspiring at the moment.

I’ve been also constantly going back to the recent Nikki Iles ’album “Face to Face” recorded with the NDR big band which is an example of just unbelievable large ensemble writing – something I’d like to explore more in the nearest future.

What is your all-time favourite album and why?

The first record that comes to my mind is not a jazz album at all! The Doors ’first (self-titled) LP is my all-time favourite, probably because it’s an album I’ve spent the most time with, especially in my teenage years.

The songwriting, the lyrics, the overall vibe is just something else. I’ve also always loved how they used elements of the blues, which I grew up listening to, but added their own twist to it.

More jazz-related choice would have to be MilesDavis’s “Bitches Brew”, Scofield and Metheny’s “I Can See You House From Here”, Kurt Rosenwinkel’s “The Next Step”.

Q: Who has caught your attention recently that we should be listening out for?

A: I would definitely recommend checking out the London guitarist Karim Saber and his recent album “Transmission”, if you haven’t already! Karim is a mind-blowing contemporary jazz player and writer. I had a chance to hear his quintet play a couple of months ago and was amazed but their distinct sound and the band’s interplay.

The saxophonist Kasper Rietkerk is another great London musician worth listening out for. He has a fantastic sextet which was also joined by a string quartet on their upcoming album. Another unique sounding band playing truly original music.

Both Karim and Kasper regularly gig around the UK, and I would very much recommend catching them play live!

For more information about Jakub Klimiuk visit jakubklimiuk.com