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  1. Igor Stravinsky

    The Deutsche Grammofon "Complete Edition" box is being reissued in March. I guess THE NEW is for these stylish yellow edges. Those who bought this set (THE OLD?) way back in 2015 surely look like fools now!
  2. New Jazz Festival Balver Hohle 11-CD Set

    Well, if this was a box set of Blue Note outtakes of Art Blakey snorting cocaine in Rudy Van Gelder's studio bathroom - yes, there would be some lively discussion here. European free jazz - no Sir.
  3. BFT 203 Available For Download

    10. Such a sweet tenor sound. The solo is a bit calculated and safe. He is repeating the same licks in the first and second solo. But good stuff. I don’t know who that is, I am pretty sure I don’t have him his music in my collection. The piano solo is generic. 11. Oh, love that bass sound. The groove is nice. Is it oud comping? The flute is sweet. Oh, and cello too. Violin is on a primitive side, but quite effective – is this Michael White? Sweet, reserved drumming (brushes?). Good piano solo – simple, but interesting. Oh, and we get an oud solo too (not going anywhere, but it’s OK). All very well recorded too. Has this 60’s vibe to it. Good stuff. 12. Ha, this cornetist (and occasional semi-decent crooner) I can actually ID with certainty, even though I have not heard this particular album. I saw him live in his trio with Mark Helias and Bill Goodwin – they are an excellent group (what an inspired – and non-obvious – choice of sidemen!). Great fluidity, sweet sound, fast thinking. I love it. The pianist (new to me) is a good match – such speed and precision. Looks like I identified what album this is, putting it into my Spotify favorites. 13. Man, what’s up with that plastic bass sound again?! Is this Joe Henderson on tenor? Or Harold Land? In any case, the solo is OK. I don’t like the drummer, sounds like Billy Higgins. Did not like this one too much, generic early 70’s stuff. Bobby Hutcherson? I am not too familiar with his music. 14. This is cute. No improvisations really. Sounds like what they would play in restaurants. Not something I would be interested in listening to, but this does not disturb the conversation. 15. Oh, two pianists, interesting. I like the tune, a lot of fun. Wish the recording was less muddy. Is this Riley / Tippett? I have their Bern concert on FMR for 10 years or so, and I think I never listened to it. 16. “Yesterdays” again. Sounds like Jaki Byard to me. Joyful stuff. Enjoyable. 17. More pleasant background music to facilitate digestion and light conversation of restaurant patrons. Ken, thank you for compiling this. I enjoyed it.
  4. New Jazz Festival Balver Hohle 11-CD Set

    Yes, I just got it last week (together with the Born Free set https://www.discogs.com/Various-Born-Free-The-12th-German-Jazz-Festival/release/7946043 ). Not sure when I listen to it, but when I do I will remember to post my impressions here.
  5. BFT 203 Available For Download

    OK, I have not done BFTs for a long time, so not sure about the current etiquette. I am focusing more on my impressions of the music without any preconceptions rather than IDing the performers (which I am horrible at anyway). Typing as I am listening. 1. I am totally ignorant about this type of music. Is this ragtime? It is quite limited in range, repetitive and predictable. These are variations rather than improvisations – all going in circles and by what sounds to me as pretty stringent rules. Is this a piano roll by chance? I am familiar with Nancarrow piano roll recordings and they have a similar sort of cascading sound. It’s only three minutes long, but frankly I am bored by the end. But this is cute, let’s leave it at that. 2. To begin with, this is really well recorded. A virtuoso performance, obviously. Very interesting what’s being done with the “bass” part. A forced “A night in Tunisia” quote – why? – totally unnecessary… Extremely well played, but quite show-offish and not very deep. Does not sound very spontaneous with some obvious stock phrases – I can imagine this being played exactly the same way on every concert. 3. Tenor sounds very familiar; I am sure I am going to be embarrassed when the name is revealed. I hear Rollins, I hear Dewey Redman. The drummer is extremely annoying – such an ugly sound. Silly drum solo. The guitar is OK, nothing too interesting for me. But the tenor I like. Is this Jerry Bergonzi by chance? 4. Oh, big band. Not something I listen to. Vey nice drums and bass. Bass guitar, right? Is this a soprano or alto playing the solo? In any case, I like it. Very pretty sound. Trombone solo - very nice. Trumpet duo – cute. Is this the same person playing two instruments? Or one instrument with and without a mute? Nice arrangement, very tight paying. The problem I have with this stuff is that the soloists have 20 seconds for a solo and they seem to be intent on cramming all their (admirable) instrument knowledge into this space (the audience loves it, obviously). My main interest is free improvisation, so this sounds very pre-determined and confined to my ears. I am not sure how much improvisatory spontaneity there is – or can be – in mainstream big band. Still, don’t get my wrong, I found the track very enjoyable. 5. I like how this starts. Good use of space, quite dramatic. A lot of reverb – but it works well for the music. Don’t know the pianist, but he/she sounds European – with Debussy influences and all that. Oh, guitar at 1:55 – did not expect that, thought this would be a piano solo. And this turns out to be “Yesterdays”. OK, generally I don’t like piano and guitar together – the instruments tend to crown each other out, and this is exactly what is happening here. There is too much piano behind the guitar, really not a good support from the pianist. I like the guitar sound (and in general, the guitarist’s playing), but it does not work well with the reverbing piano. I like both musicians individually – a lot, but this is a failure as a duet, as far as I am concerned. 6. String quartet. I thought this was bad. The tempo is too slow. The arrangement is boring with the parts played mostly in unison (some counterpoint would have been nice here). Stiff, feet stamping notwithstanding. 7. The arrangement of Jitterbug Waltz is very interesting – some good composer thinking. I love the tempo changes. I bet this is European too. With flutes and harps it could have easily been an overkill, but it is very tastefully done here. Trumpet solo - come on, is this Miles Davis or what (would be very embarrassing if it is not him)? If it is, I never heard this! Alto solo OK. Tenor - this has got to be Coltrane. What’s going on here, is this some Gil Evans thing? I loved this one! OK, I did a research and identified the album, not sure I even knew about it. Will be listening to this one for sure. 8. Pleasant polite playing, does not do much for me. The guitar solo is cute, but quite bland. Piano solo is by-the-numbers. The big band arrangement is boring. 9. I love the bass and have more than 20 solo bass records in my collection. But I did not like this one at all. For one thing, the bass sound is horrible. The bass does not breath, it’s all plastic. It’s mostly played on the upper register… Boy, these long notes around 1:03-1:07 are ugly to my ears… The few low notes that are allowed to linger a bit are such a welcome respite. Obviously, a virtuoso musician, but I really did not like this one. Thank you Ken for putting this together. Will listen to the rest of the tracks later today, if I have time.
  6. The Official Organissimo Italian Jazz Thread

    And this solo piano one by Renato Sellani, "Glad there is you" on Ponderosa, 2014, is gorgeous: https://open.spotify.com/album/2kH2tu3bXkfD5XwlDHRlRF And more Sardinian / jazz fun (Enza Favata band), even though I don't like the drumming here:
  7. The Official Organissimo Italian Jazz Thread

    I'll post more later (and boy there is a lot to recommend when it comes to Italian jazz), but here is a great one I've been enjoying for nearly 20 years: Riccardo Lay Quartetto "Frammenti" (il manifesto, 2001). Joyful stuff (with that South African via Mingus feel) with fantastic Gavino Murgia on saxophones. And if you never heard Sardinian polyphonic singing, you're in for a surprise. Not available on streaming, but can (should!) be bought for €4 at Italian amazon. https://www.amazon.it/gp/product/B0057GYN96/ Well, since somebody's mentioned Gavino Murgia, here is another great one by him: Gavino Murgia Blast 4tet - "blast" (abeat, 2018)
  8. New World Records

    I like this one quite a bit: https://www.newworldrecords.org/products/aequalis-brody-davidovsky-gideon-steiger-ung
  9. Your Favorite Jazz Records of the 1980s?

    Recorded in 1980: Fred Anderson Quartet - The Milwaukee Tapes Vol.1 (Atavistic) The John Carter Quintet - Night Fire (Black Saint) Cecil Taylor - Fly! Fly! Fly! Fly! Fly! (MPS) Fred Anderson; Steve McCall - Vintage Duets: Chicago 1-11-80 (Okka Disk) Archie Shepp; Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen - Looking At Bird (SteepleChase) Andrew Hill - Faces of Hope (Soul Note) Julius Hemphill Quartet - Flat-Out Jump Suite (Black Saint) Bill Dixon - In Italy - Volume One (Black Saint) Idris Muhammad - Kabsha (Theresa) Stéphane Grappelli; Martial Solal - Happy Reunion (Owl) Bernd Konrad - Hans Koller Unit with Didier Lockwood - Traumtänzer (Hat Hut). Reissued on CD together with 1994 Konrad / Koller sessions as "Phonolith" on hatOLOGY / Hat Hut. And that's just one year.
  10. Evan Parker

    I also thought this EP soprano solo was quite good as far as these things go (all his circular breathing soprano solos of the last 30 years or so sound the same to me), and the interview snippets are unnecessary, although their content (if you reign your imagination so that you do not "hear" what actually is not there) I find quite innocent. I have not bought any EP music for a long time, and don't have much interest in it (well, I like his tenor playing) - regardless of his views. At the least, I am grateful to him for the Psi imprint - I remember him mentioning that his motivation for starting the label was that he really wanted to put Gerd Dudek's (excellent) "Smatter" album out when nobody else was interested.
  11. The Tuba players

    This one should satisfy all your secret tuba desires: https://destination-out.bandcamp.com/album/heavy-metal-light-industry
  12. DIW and JMT: Your favourite releases?

    On DIW I like Misha Mengelberg's Trio "no Idea" quite a bit. There are also a number of wallpaint-stripping Kaoru Abe and Masayuki Takayanagi releases on DIW that are great, as far as I am concerned. This ONJQ one is good too: On JMT, the Berne's stuff is good, no surprise here. And Joey Baron's album with Eskelin and Swell is fun
  13. Evan Parker

    Is he anti-immigration, really? I find it hard to believe. His Brexit support is of "EU democratic deficit" and "anti-neoliberal" line of thinking. I very much doubt it is of a xenophobic bent. Let's not paint all Brexiters with the same brush. And they are not specifically about COVID either, Mullis died in 2019.
  14. Modern/Avant New Releases: A running thread

    Both of the Bruise(d) albums: https://tonybevan.bandcamp.com/album/bruised https://tonybevan.bandcamp.com/album/bruise-with-derek-bailey are phenomenal really. I am listening to them all the time since I got them a couple of months ago.