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on 2 October 2014
In Each And Every One is the fifth studio album from London based jazz experimentalists Polar Bear, a group driven by drummer Seb Rochford. The band's last offering Peepers, was released in 2010 and met with great critical acclaim. Since then, Rochford has worked with a huge variety of artists including the likes of Brian Eno, Yoko Ono and Damon Albarn's Africa Express. It seems that this innovative artist has been soaking up influences left, right and centre, as there are certainly traces of the ambient, avant garde and African all present here on this extraordinary record. The album is without doubt the band's most boundary-pushing to date, and manoeuvres even further away from what most-of-the-modern-world would call jazz. In fact, it moves further into the realm of electronic adventurers, such as Burial, Four Tet, Flying Lotus and Daedalus, in its artistry and cutting-edge sound.

“Open See” is a track that would not be out of place on the Eno side of Bowie's Low, with its atmospheric sci-fi feel. Whereas, the cheeky sounding “Be Free” is an infectious little number, guaranteed to get you moving with its collage of beats, bass, sax and other intriguing, audible treats. “Chotpot” is in a similar vein, and offers components you would associate with alternative dance as much as jazz, in terms of pounding beat, bass sensation and chop-up production. The wonderfully titled stand-out track “They're all Ks and Qs Lucien”, is like some kind of odyssey - with different musical elements acting like passengers on the journey, hopping on and off at different unexpected moments, changing the mood and dynamic as they come and go. “WW” is tense and primal. “Lost in Death” Parts 1 and 2 between them provide everything from funeral-dirge vibes and ceremonial rhythms, to soaring outer-space reverberations, and flashes of cataclysmic exhilaration. “Maliana” is another epic, with gratifying dual melodies and afro-rhythms. “Life and Life” seems to nod to Strauss's 2001: A Space Odyssey theme. The ambient, electric waves of “Two Storms” and the subtle psychedelic wind-down of end track “Sometimes” conclude the album perfectly.

In Each And Every One is a kaleidoscopic exploit sure to woo fans of all genres - as long as you don't like your music either beige or tepid - in which case it's very likely that your head might explode. Those on the look-out for new sensations - jazz-wise or otherwise - will not be disappointed.

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11 comment|4 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
It's 4 years since the last Polar Bear album - the outstanding 'Peepers'. While much of this album is slow pulsing, eerie, throbbing and hypnotically dreamy it also has passages where the quartet are in more assertive, full-on attack mode. The double saxes are the prominent feature as you would expect but i found myself drawn to the drumming which is outstanding with lots of subtle rim work and delicate muted grooves punctuated by sudden outbursts which keep the rhythms imaginative and prevents the vibe from ever becoming predictable. Electronics abound along with synthesised vocals with an assortment of various other beeps, squeaks and whistles set back in the mix to provide subtle sonic accents. The whole album hangs together well - nothing disjointed or out of place, no gap filling doodles or duff tracks. I've awarded 4 stars but was tempted to give it 5 and maybe as I listen more I'll revisit this review and up my rating.
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on 25 February 2016
Not what I had hoped for, this album is a bit of a ramble through hill, dale, meadow, bog and the thick forest of an overcast, late winter soundscape, with the odd bit of sun breaking through. The sort of walk you know was thoroughly worthy and invigorating but to be honest, was too much hard work to be fun and not a hostelry along the way for a bit of respite, a pie and a pint. There are moments.......but then they're gone. Trust me, it's not that I am in thrall to the structure and control of a well-rounded composition (a 'tune', if you like) but this album is just too much about the atmosphere, too much a film score for me. I'll wait a while and take my next ramble in the spring.
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on 30 November 2014
Great album. Bought after mercury prize hype, together with gogo pengain, and pleased that I did. Will look out for other albums of theirs.
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on 4 November 2014
Excellent CD, not your run of the mill jazz though.
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on 20 April 2014
Listened to "In Each and Every One" for the first time in the darkness whilst driving in the car, was transported into different world! Brilliant.
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on 28 April 2014
always challenging , fewer tunes , more dance rhythms. A brilliant band who never sit still - every ablum is different
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on 22 April 2014
Polar Bear rarely disappoint and this album sees them on top form. So hard to find stuff this good out there.
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on 30 December 2014
I was late joining the party with this one - it was on my wish list and then finally purchased for me as a present this Christmas. I am just glad to have finally caught up, because In Each and Every One is a bit of a gem.
Jazz ain't really my thing, but artful experimentation is - especially when it comes mixed in with more than a dash of contemporary electronica. All boxes are therefore ticked by this album.
What I love most about the record is that it manages to retain its sense of melody and structure while never losing its sense of adventure or spilling over into overt self-indulgence; something that proves a stumbling block for so many.
The rhythm tracks are amazing and some of the sax playing (not an instrument I usually enthuse about) a subtle revelation. A fine record and definitely my favourite instrumental album of 2014. Score: 4.2/5
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on 11 April 2014
I agree with everything the previous reviewer has said about the music on 'In Each and Every One'. This is a superb album which rewards with each new listen. I can't recommend it enough.
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