Dark Side Trio

Dnipro, Ukraine


The Dark Side Trio project (Dnipro) was founded by the famous Ukrainian saxophonist and composer Danylo Vinarikov in 2016. At first, the trio consisted of Danylo Vinarikov (saxophone), Mykhailo Lyshenko (keys), Dmytro Lytvynenko (drums). In 2020, the band expanded to sextet, but continued to be called Dark Side Trio with a note by Danylo Vinarikov – Ensemble with Friends, this name was left during the release of the second album. “Industrial Song” is an album dedicated to an industrial city that lives its dynamic life, which sometimes forces to obey to its tempo, and sometimes freeze in its illusory state, inspires cinematic plots…
The band has toured extensively in the cities of Ukraine, participated in the festivals Leopolis Jazz Fest, Jazz on Dnieper, Zaporizhzhia Jazzy fest.


Danylo Vinarikov – saxophone
Yakiv Tsvietinsky – trumpet
Mykhailo Lyshenko – piano
Konstantin Ivchuk – guitar
Serhii Artemov – bass
Dmytro Lytvynenko – drums

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The sophomore album from Kiev-based tenor saxophonist Danylo Vinarikov’s Dark Side Trio is a tuneful, burnished affair which belies the rather forbidding name of the band, the seriosity of the album title and the dark satanic mills evoked by the sleeve art. The name of the band is also paradoxical, for the Dark Side Trio heard here is augmented by three other young lions of the Ukrainian jazz scene.
But on the evidence of Industrial Song, Ukrainian jazz is catching up. The musicians are technically adept and Vinarikov, trumpeter Yakiv Tsvietinskyi (a Fulbright scholar), keyboard player Misha Lushenko and guitarist Konstantin Ivchuk are assured soloists. Vinarikov is also an engaging composer, writing all the album’s seven tunes. There are times, probably inevitably, when the music resonates with the work of an earlier generation of players from neighbouring Poland, notably Tomasz Stanko and Krzysztof Komeda, who have presumably been an important influence on the development of the Ukrainian scene.
As Vinarikov’s generation of Ukrainian musicians develop a more clearly defined Ukrainian voice things will get even better—and if the six musicians in the Dark Side Trio are indicative, the chops are there, ready to go. Stay tuned.

Chris May, allaboutjazz.com