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Roger Viner
Planet Jazz, January 2001

"Florian Ross has assembled an impressive twelve-piece band and created a musical tapestry of outstanding scope and depth with this project. The all-brass ensemble with rhythm section has an excellent balance and gorgeous horn sound utilizing the full dynamic range of the group. From the opening notes it demonstrates a full palate of brass tones and textures with a chorale played in a traditional vein before adopting a rhythmic up-tempo treatment of the same motif in the fanfare...This disk amply illustrates further delectable directions that a large ensemble such as this can take in the creation of new jazz forms."

James D. Armstrong, Jr., October 2000

"In Lilacs and Laughter, young German pianist and composer Florian Ross and his colleagues achieve a remarkable creative balance between adventurous written forms and extemporization. This highly atypical expanded ensemble wisely avoids conventional arrangements and chord-spelling exercises in favor of Ross' thirteen highly challenging originals, which are consistently evocative, atmospheric, and memorable. The ensemble's consistent use of space in lieu of strongly defined chords results in tremendous tonal freedom relative to defined structures. Not excessively chromatic, nor overly concerned with metrics, this very forward-looking music bears witness to the fact that the future of Jazz lies in continued exploration. Original voices in composition are very rare, and Florian Ross stands among them."

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