Robert Russell Trio is one of the leading jazz bands in Bangladesh, consisting of Tanveer Haque on bass guitar, Towfiq Arifin on drums and Robert Russell on keys.
The band has been active in the country's music scene the last five years and has performed at numerous concerts, shaping the country's jazz scenario.
Founder of the band, Robert worked as a recording artist for Grammy Records in Thailand, Associate professor in Jazz Studies for CQCM Australia, while Towfiq Arifin is a pioneering jazz drummer in Bangladesh.
Towfiq is also a renowned jazz music educator, conducting lessons and masterclasses to foster a new generation of jazz drummers in Bangladesh.
On the other hand, bassist Tanveer is an alumnus of Berklee College of Music and Swarnabhoomi Academy of Music, and he has recorded and played shows in the USA, India and Bangladesh.
The band members mostly jam and play together, sharing the same language of music. In the last five years, Robert Russell Trio has paved the way for many emerging jazz musicians.
Their debut album 'River' was released on June 10 on various streaming platforms.
The album is one of its kind and features a total of nine tracks. The band's original mix of jazz, electric and folk music makes the album a distinct one. Each song sounds different and creates a lasting effect in the minds of the listeners.
Composed by Robert himself, the album is an ultimate treat for music lovers and has paved the way for local musicians to create jazz albums while collaborating with various artists.
Such an album will draw attention from music lovers all over the world for its unique tunes paired with contemporary and fusion jazz.
Perhaps my most favourite song from the album is 'Morning Thing', which is a brilliant mix of folk music with jazz.
Nazrul Islam's dhol on the track adds a sense of momentum to the fusion jazz number. This is one of those tracks that will make the audience tap their feet to the music at live shows.
The album opens with the instrumental number 'Jazzmin'. Robert's brilliance on the keys makes the track dramatic.
Towfiq's drum beats in the background is a bliss to the ears in 'Da Grin', which creates a lonesome night-time ambience.
'Pianola' is another track where Towfiq demonstrates some brilliant drumming alongside Robert's strokes on the keyboard. This track gives a classic jazz vibe - a treat for the jazz music lovers.
The lyrics of 'The Waltz Alone' were penned by Kristin Beradi. Kailey J Zercher's violin in the song will bring back nostalgia. It is the sound of tranquillity and sadness simultaneously.
As the album is a fusion, the music arrangement in the last track 'The Professor' is bold and funky, demonstrating Robert's mastery of mood-setting and creating ambient compositions.
'Dance Penguin' is another techno-infused track from the album. Bliss of base, funky tunes of guitar and laid-back drumming makes the track a perfect one.
'Thoughts in Transit' is another fusion track where Robert's works on keys from three minutes 32 seconds will surely impress listeners.
Mixed and mastered by Sabbir Ahmed, this album also features various guest artists in different tracks.