Cut to the Chase – Music Soup

Cut to the Chase – Music Soup

Label: Chicken Coup Records

Release date: June 2016

Catalog number: C7025


01 Cut to the Chase
02 The Theme
03 Movin'
04 Senior Citizen
05 Somehow
06 Skywalk
07 A New Start
08 Your Song
09 In A Summer's Day

Cool, Hip, New cross-genre music on Chicken Coup…Music Soup is a dynamic concept and group of musicians from Greece led by Evgenia Karlafti (organ, piano, el.piano, vocals) and Nestor Dimopoulos (guitar) that definitely have something to say…the music is pleasant, original, and hip!


Evgenia started as a classical pianist, switched to jazz piano later on and attracted to the world of jazz organ once she met with Tony Monaco in a summer camp. Being an active musician since the age of 13 years old and playing as a classical pianist, as a keyboardist/singer in rock groups and later on as a jazz pianist/ organ player / vocalist, she always tries to unify all this experience in a natural way.


Nestor started also from classical guitar, and his curiosity about other genres of music and improvisation led him to Berklee College of Music where he had the opportunity to study with outstanding professors, and play with highly talented individuals from all over the world. After graduation he studied Jazz Improvisation with Jerry Bergonzi.


Evgenia and Nestor formed Music Soup group in 2006 and with this release they celebrate 10 years of music and life.

You’re going to enjoy this!



Evgenia Karlafti (organ, piano, el.piano, vocals)

Nestor Dimopoulos (guitar)

Vagelis Kotzabasis (drums)


Anastasis Gouliaris (drums) on track nr 9. (“In a Summer’s Day”)

Dimitris Papadopoulos (tr), Dimitri Vassilakis (t.sax), Antonis Andreou (tb)

(“Moovin’” & “Your Song”)

Horn arrangements Haris Ziouva

Recording & Mixing; Yiannis Labropoulos @ Kyriazis Studios

Mastering; Tony Monaco

Produced by Nestor Dimopoulos & Evgenia Karlafti (Music Soup)



“Karlafti and Nestor Dimopoulos have a wonderful thing going on with Music Soup, balancing the accessible and grooving with musically provocative material. One of the best organ dates of the year.”
-Jazz Views with C.J Shearn

…good stuff, swinging in intricate ways, funking and laying back… This is a band with its own personality. And it moves the organ trio ahead without a lot of the requisite Jimmy Smith cliches. Good job!
-Grego Applegate, Gapplegate Music Review

…the emphasis throughout is on the trio, which could pass at times for Joey DeFrancesco’s group…Fans of organ combos will find much to enjoy in this pleasing effort.
-Scott Yanow, Downbeat magazine 3, 1/2*

The most progressive set considered, here, Music Soup’s Cut to the Chase is firmly in the jazz organ trio neighborhood while expanding the perimeter of what we should consider the standard soul-jazz repertoire…This is the release for the more forward-minded listener that is looking for something new from an old format.
-C. Michael Bailey, All About Jazz

“The hot bop, funky, cool jazz this team produces will get your juices flowing… Each of the musicians is well versed and shines in the spotlight when called upon. Evgenia and Nestor composed the music, a CD that will enliven any commute!”
-O’S Place Jazz Newsletter by Oscar Groomes

High fliers on the local Greek jazz scene, this trio is celebrating their 10th anniversary with a smoking B3 led set that is an appropriate discovery for a label led by a B3 player in the flesh. With everyone on board knowing their apples, we get a sense that jazz is the international language once again as everyone on board knows what to do and adds some other side of the world flavor to the B3 festivities. This organ is purely organic with a zesty taste drawn from Mediterranean soil. Check it out.
-Chris Spector, Midwest Record

… I recognize immediately that these serious musicians are challenging the listener and themselves to play outside the box.(…)
Music Soup is a good name for this trio of musicians because they embrace a mixed bag of styles and musical concepts that mirror their decade of playing together and their individual personalities…
… Because they have been working together for ten years, Music Soup has a tight, cohesive sound. Their music is well written and produced. On “Your Song” horns join the group. Special guests Dimitris Papadopoulos on trumpet, Dimitri Vassilakis on tenor sax and Antonis Andreou on trombone fatten the sound. However these horns, (nicely arranged by Haris Ziouva) are merely icing on the creative cake that Karlafti and Dimopoulos have baked. Nestor’s bluesy guitar and Evgenia Karlafti’s organ mastery are the fireworks of this production.
-Dee Dee McNeil, Musical Memoires

All the music heard here is composed by Evgenia and Nestor and is richly varied, including intimate ballads and punchy up-tempo pieces that call to mind organ-guitar bands of earlier years, although here given a thoroughly modern makeover.
Worth looking out for.
-Bruce Crowther, JazzMostly

….  back in Athens, this CD indicates that there is jazz of Olympian standard going on (…)
Music Soup are, basically, an organ/guitar/drums trio augmented for this album by three horns. Karlafti can swing – think Shirley Scott and Dorothy Donegan and Evgenia is up there with them and quite a few of her male contemporaries! (…)
Guitar is comparable with anything heard ‘twixt Adriatic and Atlantic and the horns also have their moments in the Aegean sun…
Cut To The Chase is described as hip, eclectic jazz from Greece and I, for one, won’t argue with that.
-Lance Liddle, Bebop Spoken here

You don’t hear a lot about jazz music from Greece, which is a shame, as they apparently have a very happening scene there. Music Soup may help heighten awareness of Greek expertise in the jazz world with their new CD, “Cut to the Chase”, which features a self-proclaimed ‘eclectic’ approach that covers hard bop, RnB, fusion and more. (…) Both Evgenia and Nestor are virtuoso performers. Evgenia sometimes has the expected bluesy soul jazz sound often associated with the B3, but she often takes on the more abstract post bop sounds of Larry Young, and even some European jazz-rock along the lines of Dave Stewart. Nestor reveals that he is a fan of Wes Montgomery, Pat Metheny and others, but often his mix of abstract harmonies and rhythmic blues may have you thinking John Scofield.

“Cut to the Chase” opens strong with the title cut that mixes driving post bop with Greek influenced odd-metered fusion. This is an excellent direction for the band to pursue, and they return to a similar sound on “Senior Citizen” and “A New Start”. Other instrumental cuts include the bluesy groove of “Movin” and the Bossa-Nova flavor of “Skywalk”. The remaining four tracks feature Evgenia’s vocals on songs that range from ballads to dance oriented RnB. Evgenia is a great singer (…) Overall “Cut to the Chase” makes for a great introduction for Music Soup, and the flow of the tracks is very much like a live show.
-John Sanders, Jazz  Music Archives

Although the album “Cut To The Chase” is recorded in a studio, the flow of the nine tracks evokes a live recording; It has such momentum, energy and move! Nearly 52 minutes footage immersive and blood pumping…I highly recommend, this really is a very slick album!
-Jan Hocek, Jazzport


If you are interested in purchasing an individual track from this cd, visit Cut