About the album
The Ecstasy of Becoming
Embark on an enchanting voyage with the Canadian duo Flying Pooka— JUNO-winning pianist Florian Hoefner and JUNO-nominated winds/vocal improviser Dani Oore. Their fearless debut venture, “The Ecstasy of Becoming,” available from Alma Records in October 2023, intertwines risk and unbridled creativity.
Fully improvised music that simultaneously sustains tonality and shifting harmonies is rarely encountered outside of solo contexts. Yet, everything on The Ecstasy of Becoming is a first take because there was no pre-planning of musical material for any part of the recording. Instead, each composition, and their combined arc, emerged in real-time: an unfolding process of intuitive listening, bursting with effervescent melodies, harmonic sophistication, and structural depth. The result is raw, elegant, bold, fragile, playful — a story of vulnerable transformation —and a way of listening that could nourish a divided world.
Jazz Journal, Matty Bannond
Buckle up, listeners. […] The Ecstasy Of Becoming is an in-the-moment album characterised by responsive playing. The duo has a shared willingness to take real-time risks. The results are sometimes pleasing, sometimes terrifying. It’s a wild ride.
Rhythm of Study, Mark Lomanno
“joyous and tricky … stunningly lyrical and dynamic … At times wondrously improvised, the development, organization, precision and clarity of ideas, and arcs of the music betray a deep connection between the musicians. Hoefner and Oore cover a wide range of sounds and genres, with imagination, intriguing and responsive dialogue, and expert musicality as the unifying factors. At times calming and lushly melodic, at others playful and noisy, as Flying Pooka the duo plays fugues, jams, grooves and vamps; ballads that bounce and others that caress; dances that haunt, lurk, and seep; and others that flutter and float.”