Dreamy new jazz album “Resavoir” soars

The cover of Resavoir's first single off the album, Escalator. The song was released in January 2019.

Courtesy International Anthem

The cover of Resavoir's first single off the album, Escalator. The song was released in January 2019.

What music plays in your dreams? The dreams where you are flying; where you are floating in the middle of the ocean; where you are sitting on a cloud. What music goes along with those images? I’ve found it: Resavoir‘s debut, self-titled album.

The Chicago based jazz ensemble, founded by Will Miller (member of indie-rock group Whitney), released this great project on June 28, 2019. It consists of 9 songs, spanning a transformative 30 minutes. 

The calming tone of the saxophone mixed with the soft yet ever-present synthesizer is brought together by the flowing trumpet playing of Miller. Miller uses synths to harmonize his trumpet, making a very full sound. Dual drumming by Peter Manheim and Jeremy Cunningham creates a driving and intensified jazz beat. Smooth saxophone by Irvin Pierce zests the pieces with flavor. Crisp and beautiful vocals by Akenya Seymour, who also plays keys, compliment the melodies created by the rest of the ensemble. According to the Chicago Tribune, most of the beats were “created as a means of crafting beats for the thriving hip-hop community of Chicago.”

The third track, “Taking Flight,” deserves its name. When you close your eyes, you probably think of the dream when you learned how to fly. “Taking Flight” features the beautiful harp of Brandee Younger, paired with up beat saxophone solos. The bass notes in the first few seconds of the song are off beat and a little awkward at first, but they set a tone of adventure that continues throughout the rest of the track. 

When you close your eyes, you probably think of the dream when you learned how to fly.”

The fourth track, “Plantasy,” is an exciting and heartfelt journey that is lead by a surprisingly emotional piano melody. It is accompanied by an inspiring and funny music video about a house plant going on its own journey, much like the song. It is noisy, chaotic, echoey and at times off-putting. All of this contributes to the calming and relieving nature of the last 30 seconds, which places you where you started, though you’ve attained the experience of “Plantasy.”

The first single, “Escalator” was released in January of 2019, a time that fit perfectly with the track’s comforting, wintery feel. The album version of “Escalator” now features rapper/saxophonist Sen Morimoto, another fantastic up-and-coming Chicago musician in his own right. This version carries the same tune as the demo, but adds the lyrical genius rap verse of Morimoto – an example of how the Resavoir beats were originally used (in the Chicago hip hop community).

The last song on the record, “LML,” is a somber, yet optimistic piece, with a repetitive verse sung beautifully. With smooth musical interludes that match the rest of the album, I’d describe the song as a perfect way to end an amazing experience. 

In this album, Resavoir takes the reins with talent and creativity. They make their own, multi-genre sound, and fill their music with energy and life. Though some songs take time getting to their best, they always satisfy in the end. Uplifting and driving sounds fill the air, and emotional melodies take over in this dreamy and delightful record.

In this album, Resavoir takes the reins with talent and creativity. They make their own, multi-genre sound, and fill their music with energy and life.”

And it’s hard not to mention the thriving music scene in Chicago, of which Resavoir is a great example. So many great artists and genres of music coming together to make an amazing piece of art, and to be so close (only 90 miles) to this incredible community is truly inspiring. Resavoir may seem like just a jazz album, but it is a microcosm of the Chicago music scene. It wouldn’t exist without the collaboration of the amazing artistic minds of Chicago.