Japanese Flower (LP)


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SKU: UMLP06 Category:


To follow up on their first album Nature in its inscrutability strikes back (Umlaut Records 2015), the unclassifiable European trio ISM] is releasing two new recordings captured during a studio session in Tokyo in November 2018. The first part titled Metaphor was released on CD in the spring of 2019 while the second installment – the LP Japanese Flower – will be available in June 2021.

In this dense and adventurous diptych, the rhythm section of the group [Ahmed] exposes and propels music populated by sound fictions that pulverize the listening habits of the jazz trio format. Sometimes polyphonic, meditative, pulsed and repetitive, abstract or hypnotic, the music of [ISM] is crude, direct, labyrinthine, always rooted in an immediate sound matter — as consisting of abrupt breaks and renewed continuities. Like the floral compositions of the Ikebana artist Junichi Kakizaki, this music can be listened to « like a flower » and step by step unveils a secret unity where the work of improvisation intensifies each of its moments.

[ISM] is a name written in ink. A dash through European creative music. A round trip, Berlin – Oxford, via Paris. [ISM] is Pat, Joel and Antonin in a dotted silence without name. Acoustically, the trio creates abstract forms close of written contemporary music with sounds reminding us of ancient traditional jazz trios. The groove which appears in this music is dense, extreme but always quiet. Music in a continuous flow of high voltage charges. In Arabic, اسم [ISM] is a way to connect between different cultural and imaginary worlds. اسم [ISM] is word that means The Name.

To be released on June 30th 2021. You can already get the LP in pre-sale on our Bandcamp.

Additional information




Antonin Gerbal, Joel Grip, Pat Thomas




Pat Thomas
Joel Grip
Antonin Gerbal


اسم [Ism]


Side A – Dahlia (20:23)
Side B – Tomato (20.18)


Pat Thomas : piano
Joel Grip : double bass
Antonin Gerbal : drums
All music by Pat Thomas, Joel Grip and Antonin Gerbal.

Recording : Knuttel House, Tokyo – November 23rd 2018
Engineering, mixing and mastering : Taku Unami
Floral art and liner notes : Junichi Kakizaki
Photo : Joji Okamoto
Design : Takashi Nagata
Produced by Joel Grip and Antonin Gerbal.
Thanks to Taku Umami, Junichi Kakizaki, Joji Okamoto and John Chantler