[Harp-L] Review of Konstantin Kolesnichenko's new CD Minor Differences

PT Gazell pt@xxxxx
Fri Jul 14 08:58:38 EDT 2017

Minor Differences: Konstantin Kolesnichenko

Every so often a musician comes along that strikes just the right balance of
melody, soul, fire and
originality. Konstantin Kolesnichenko is one of these rare artists. I first
became aware of
Konstantin after being tagged on Social Media as one of his influences for
my 2005 release
³Swingin¹ EasyŠHittin¹ Hard.² What has followed is a remarkable maturity for
someone still in
their early 30¹s.

As is often the case, it takes some time to dial in an identifiable tone and
style. Go listen to his
early postings on YouTube and you¹ll hear shades of Little Walter, Dennis
Gruenling and even a
little of myself and Jason Ricci. Fast forward to his 2016 release
³Hypnotized² and you can hear
how he had begun to settle in on a sound.

Kolesnichenko¹s latest effort, ³Minor differences,² is a huge leap forward
in many respects. All
the songs were carefully picked to best portray where this artist is headed.
As the title suggests,
every selection is in a minor key with the exception of ³Clockface.² This
sort of concept is
important not only for continuity of performance, but also as a way to
really stretch out in a genre
that works well for him. Kolesnichenko has also dialed in what effects he
likes best, and what
gets his point across. The result is a sound that is now highly
identifiable. His soulful approach
along with his effects, mic and amp of choice, reminds me of when a Ray
Charles record would
come on the radio. You knew instantly who it was. Ray¹s voice was once
described as sounding
like a busted tube. Kolenichenko¹s sound is not that dissimilar in my
opinion. There is something
very earthy and pleasing about how he has crafted his sound.

Another departure for this offering is his return to using Richter tuning
for his diatonic
instruments. All the songs are performed on Seydel Low Tone 1847¹s that are
half valved using
Gazell method valves. This has moved his chromatic thought process and
emotional content to
the next level. His use of the additional blow and draw bends that the
valves provide, really add
color to this project. The valved shading he uses to blend with the organ
and guitar makes his
playing that much more emotional and meaningful.

Another element crafting this sound is how he has picked instrumentation to
support him. In
addition to drums and guitar, he features jazz style organ and selective use
of percussion that
really define this EP. His unison lines with the organ give the whole thing
that small section feel
that is not always easy to pull off. Check out the opening track ³Joe¹s
Blues² to see what I mean.
Other notable tracks are ³In The Wee Small Hours² and the title track ³Minor
Differences² an
original composition.

Kolesnichenko is not afraid to try things that most folks would dismiss as
fluff. ³Volare² is a
perfect example of this. One of the things I have always admired about
Charlie Musselwhite was
his fearlessness to include songs that others would consider trite.
Kolesnichenko obviously is cut
from the same cloth.

Get this EPŠnow. Dig ItŠ
PT Gazell

³Minor Differences² is available at the following sites:

pt at xxxxx


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