released February 11, 2022
From Mike Kuhl:
Kraft is a German word that means energy, strength, force. KRAFT is a creative, improvisational quartet formed by drummer Mike Kuhl in 2018. Joining Kuhl are long-time collaborators and some the most stalwart improvisers on the scene today - Dave Ballou (trumpet), John Dierker (reeds), and Luke Stewart (bass).
Over the past ten years, Kuhl hosted a weekly gig at Bertha’s Mussels in Baltimore with his trio of Ballou, Jeff Reed (bass) and later John Lee (guitar). During that time, legendary players including Dave Liebman, Tim Berne, Michael Formanek, Tony Malaby, Drew Gress, Mark Giuliana and many others have performed with the group.
One Tuesday in the summer of 2018, Kuhl took the opportunity to showcase a group he always wanted to play with – the group to be known as KRAFT. There was an instant, beautiful, and natural chemistry to the quartet. On February 19, 2021 KRAFT was invited to perform and record a live stream concert at An Die Musik in Baltimore. That night the group realized they had created a special recording. Stewart, who holds a degree in audio production, offered to mix the recording of the concert during his week-long residency at Pioneer Works in Brooklyn, New York.
Upon hearing the final mixes, their intuitions were confirmed. What is presented on this recording is completely unedited as it was performed that evening.
Special thanks to Henry Wong, Jed, Doc, Andrew and all the good people at An Die Musik. Very special thanks to Dave, Luke and John for their friendship and completely honest artistry.
Recording on February 19, 2021 at An Die Musik (Baltimore MD) by Andrew Bohman.
Mixed by Luke Stewart.
Mastered by Ed Tetreault.
Artwork and design by TJ Huff (huffart.com
All compositions © 2022 Dave Ballou, John Dierker, Luke Stewart, Mike Kuhl.
OOYH Untamed is the digital-only DIY side of Out Of Your Head Records. The focus of Untamed is to release high quality performances with a quicker turnaround than a traditional studio album. They may be a live performance, a home studio recording, or an unearthed gem that never had the proper release outlet. That being said the performances are always first rate, and this is music that we strongly believe should be out in the world.
In the time of COVID-19 all proceeds from Untamed album sales are given directly to the artists. We want to say a huge thank you to TJ Huff (huffart.com
) for generously donating original art, time, and talents to the design of these albums.