With everyone stuck inside during this global pandemic, there is bound to be some big-time creative juices flowing for projects later this year. But, let’s be clear, if there isn’t, it’s not really the end of the world. We all need to get out mental health priorities straight and it’s ok if those juices aren’t flowing. That being said, we bring you something that is flowing; some new contemporary jazz from the Swiss-French contemporary jazz outfit Kuma. This quartet, who are led by saxophonist Arthur Donnot and keyboardist Matthieu Llodra, also features Fabien Iannone on bass and Maxence Sibille on drums. There is a guest trumpet spot by Zacharie Ksyk on “Kumadé”, this very track offered up today. These young, but very experienced players (Llodra and Donnot have held it down with ten-night residencies at the Cully Jazz Festival for nine years), while the rest of the band have been gaining momentum doing their thing as well with enough experience to go around as well. The perfect fit of these players creates Kuma’s sound. The EP itself is a good cross-section of tracks, with two offerings that run along the side of past ECM releases (think moody and atmospheric), while “Kumadé” hits on the funkier side of things, grooving to a mid-’70s style that runs the chain into funky fusion that we’re digging in the lab for sure. Ksyk’s trumpet is for sure a highlight on the track and a great lead into the jazz-funk part of the track. There is much improvisation, but along with some added tight grooves, Kuma is laying down the blueprint for modern-day jazz that would easily fit into the UK jazz scene with that myriad of fresh players and sounds that give a nod to the old. but innovate in the now. We’re looking forward to hearing more from them this year. Check out the track “Kumadé” below and pre-order from Rocafort Records after the stream.