"Of all the artists covered this month, pianist Achim Kaufmann takes jazz the furthest out of its traditional confines. His musical language combines formidable traditional chops with the extended playing techniques of avant-garde concert music (à la Cage and Cowell). (…) if Anton Webern had written bebop, this is what it might well have sounded like."
                                                Christian Carey, Splendid Magazine

"Kaufmann's sensitivity exhibits itself not in the post-Bill Evans or Keith Jarrett misappropriation of the word, where it can mean 'bog-standard classicism', but in his keen ear for meaningful note choices and in his pithy, pared-back structures. The opening track immediately alerts you to Kaufmann's distinctive voice. Its elastic structure and busy surface is welded together with audibly precise off-tonal motifs..."
                                                                         Philip Clark, The Wire  (July 2005)

"Achim Kaufmann's set of solo piano improvisations is concise and very adventurous. (…) He often plays violently but at other times creates an uneasy piece that is anything but peaceful. (…) Overall this is an intriguing if somewhat disturbing set of avantgarde-jazz."
                                        Scott Yanow, The All Music Guide

"Stylistically it's refreshingly hard to pin down (…) - Kaufmann is fluid, supple, exhibiting a relaxed and nuanced pianism that owes as much to a classical training, and the tradition of the Etude (Debussy and Ligeti..) …
Kaufmann's reading of "2300 Skiddoo" is a real treat (and reveals a thorough knowledge of Misha, Monk - but also Messiaen), but it's only one of a whole bag of treats on offer here."
                                        Dan Warburton, Paris Transatlantic

"...a host of tone colors and textures, ranging from percussive to sustained, at points even including vibrato and keening overtones. "Her Hair a Dark River..." is a particularly evocative piece... it's filled with tons of haunting sound effects.
Listeners who greet these types of post-Cage experiments with antipathy may be skeptical of Kaufmann's pianism, but give a listen to the workout that he gives to Herbie Nichols' '2300 Skiddoo'; you'll hear plenty of swing and a Monk-like fascination with piquant harmonies that brand his approach to the instrument as abundantly informed by jazz. Like Georg Graewe, Fred van Hove, and John Wolf Brennan, Kaufmann is a musician who combines many disparate styles into a postmodern concoction, unrepentant in its eclecticism but impressive in its musicality."
                                                                                           Christian Carey, allaboutjazz

"...a canvas filled with various shades and tones which, taken all in all, cohere courtesy of Kaufmann's intensely personal, almost esoteric approach."
                                                                                                  Chris Parker, Jazz Review

"On 'knives' … the 2001 winner of the SWR jazz award leaves nothing unturned when looking to create new sonic facets: by reaching into the piano's interior, by employing percussive effects, by 'bowing' but certainly also by displaying a stupendous facility on the keyboard."
                                                        Reinhard Kager, SWR radio (Germany)