Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Guy Berger

Keith Jarrett's Koln Concert

44 posts in this topic

I've been listening to this album quite a bit over the past few days and I have to say that its brilliance mostly eludes me. There are definitely a few "moments", and it's enjoyable in a lightly melodic way the whole way through. I can understand why this album would have mass appeal, but as far as solo concerts I think Bremen & Lausanne are better. I guess I'd describe it as "ear candy", but not even particularly tasty.

Anyway, Jarrett's work in ensembles is much more enjoyable IMHO.

Guy

p.s. One more thing -- I'm sure some people will toss in the usual quips abou Jarrett's personality, mannerisms, etc. Yawn. That's not interesting, save it for another thread.

Edited by Guy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't have any problem with Koln, but I completely agree that Bremen & Lausanne is better. I've never found anything by Jarrett less than interesting.

Mike

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It took me awhile, but I now enjoy this disc. When I first got it, I couldn't stand it. It's really quite remarkable that I didn't sell it or trade it away. I held on to it, possibly because it was the only Jarrett I had for a long time, and possibly because I hoped that the passage of time would reveal new things to me. It's still far from being my favorite Jarrett (it's still the only solo Jarrett recording I have), but I've learned to like it. I think the thing that clicked for me was when I started listening to other ECM releases. The Jarrett suddenly made sense in a way that it hadn't before, and it didn't strike me as quite the same self-indulgent pile of poop that it first appeared to be.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I liked it from the very first time I heard it. Instantly amazed by his creativity on this record. Melody isn't a bad thing. I've never heard the Bremen etc. concerts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This probably only applies to UK listeners but about halfway through the first section he gets into what sounds to me like a fantasy on the theme from Grandstand!I just have all these images of horse racing,football and Frank Bough,kinda takes the edge of what otherwise is a wonderful set.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I love this record dearly. Mostly because it was my first Jarrett and I played the hell out of it. A dozen solo records later it doesnt have the same impact, but its still very good.

Vienna is still my favorite solo, with Bremen and Lausanne up there.

Anyone like Radiance? Ive only heard a little bit of it so far.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

this is a good album to put on while in bed.

not his best solo work, but the kind of CD if you went to a girl's place and looked at her CDs she might possibly have this and it would probably be the best choice available.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Facing You" is a nice single album of solo Keith.

That's about as much as anyone probably needs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This probably only applies to UK listeners but about halfway through the first section he gets into what sounds to me like a fantasy on the theme from Grandstand!I just have all these images of horse racing,football and Frank Bough,kinda takes the edge of what otherwise is a wonderful set.

And, let's be honest, there's some images of Frank Bough you really don't need...

I've always liked Koln and as it was the first of the solo concert discs that I bought, I guess it's just ingrained in my memory a little better than some of the others. Bremen and Lausanne are both highly enjoyable though.

There is a certain 'shapeliness' to the flow of improvisations on Koln that set it apart slightly and which I think people respond to (perhaps subconciously).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Simply my favorite Jarrett solo performance. This one is very special to me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think the thing that clicked for me was when I started listening to other ECM releases.  The Jarrett suddenly made sense in a way that it hadn't before.

Interesting point. I remember thinking the same thing when listening to Tord Gustavsen's latest CD at Tower.

Guy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I took to it right away when I was 18. Fascinated by that left hand. I think the last cut is in the Real Book and I learned to play that one. Not listened to it recently, though I have it now on CD. I found the Bremen & Lausanne concerts a bit more deeper though. I even have Staircase and the Bregenz / Munich concert album, the former being the better one if I recall - not sure when I'll revisit these again. Do I have time to listen, as I did in university, to 3 complete LPs while laying on a couch?

An aside - if you want a laugh you can read the half-baked review in AMG of it. There's a long thread on AAJ about the author (Thom Jurek) and I have a few contributions.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

After "Facing You" and the Bremen/Lausanne concerts,

my mom bought this for me back in high-school days.

It seemed to complete the triad, but I got real tired of him

afterwards - it seemed to go downhill from there. It became "fashionable"

to own this recording - kinda like having John Klemmer's "Touch" LP.

After that sonic organ mess that came out a couple of years later,

I was expecting him to start oozing over any

keyboard-based instrument he could (or couldn't) handle.

Got yerself a harmonium? A hurdy-gurdy? A clavichord?

(Alas, the clavinet was too funky for him tho).

Well, Keith would be knockin' on yer door soon!

In '78, when the maintenance man at my apartment complex

broke into my apartment and stole my turntable (among other things),

I was blessed that "Hymns/Spheres" was still on it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Anyone ever see the Italian film Caro Diario by Nino Moretti? There's a lengthy section where the protagonist rides his Vespa throughout Rome and then the countryside. All the while the 2nd cut from Koln is playing. May be the first and only instance of it on a soundtrack? (oops I am wrong)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Koln Concert sounds like New Age to me.

I listen to it from time to time, and I don't mind it, but I think that it's overrated.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

rostasi, jarrett could get pretty funky. he is about my favorite player on e-piano.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can still remember opening the plastic on the Bremen Lausanne box when it came out (or after I had saved up for it after hearing a side at a friend's) and digesting that, and then getting the Koln Concert when they were released and just exulting in the ebb and flow of melody and embellishment. . . . I listened to this many times, and it was the one Jarrett record that others partying about me seemed to like, so it has that sort of communicability. . . .

It's not my favorite of the Jarrett solo productions. I sometimes thing Staircase is my favorite, Radiance may one day become my favorite, I'm deeply attached to about half of the Bremen Lausanne which was my first and perhaps in some ways most rewarding Jarrett purchase. But man oh man. . . Koln can really be . . . transporting . . . in the right times. A concert to just ease into and to let just wash over you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

rostasi, jarrett could get pretty funky.  he is about my favorite player on e-piano.

He's also quite funky on the acoustic. One favorite example is the intro to "Inflight", from the album Backhand.

It's one of my favorite facets of his playing, though like everything about Jarrett's playing it can get excessive.

Guy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i aint never heard of backhand!

i mean i also enjoy the pastorality of jarrett's electric playing like on ruta and daiyta.

i like basking in the warmth of a fender rhodes aftertouch.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've largely made it a mission to avoid KJ :crazy: , mainly because of some bad hair-dos f :bwallace: rom the seventies and also because of the grunting. However, I fairly recently got his 2CD solo set recorded in Japan on ECM (Radiance?) and blow me, it's not half bad and not a freaky hair-do :bwallace: in sight..

also struck me as pretty boring but hey, we live and learn :crazy::excl:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If I didn't listen to jazz artists - especially 1970s-era jazz artists - because of their hairdos, well I'd be missing out on a lot. :lol: What must you think of Sonny's mohawk period? :P

As to Radiance, this one hasn't really grabbed me yet. I can understand someone finding it a bit "boring." But Koln and some of the others (the Sun Bear box, for example) are anything but boring. You should give Koln a try...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Anyone ever see the Italian film Caro Diario by Nino Moretti? There's a lengthy section where the protagonist rides his Vespa throughout Rome and then the countryside. All the while the 2nd cut from Koln is playing. May be the first and only instance of it on a soundtrack? (oops I am wrong)

In the film Nanni Moretti rides his vespa from Rome to the place where Pasolini was killed by fascists in 1975. Pier Paolo Pasolini, one of the greatest film director we had, I mean I judge him, and I am not the only one, of the same artistic level of Fellini, Antonioni and Rosselini. A real touching part of the movie, underlined by Jarret's music. Koln is simply perfect in this case.

About my feeling I am partial about it, because it was my first Jarret's first solo album. In the Sun Bear Concerts, there are great moments too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

back to reality , hair-dos are not a problem ( for me) mohawk, big bush, bald eagle etc , however most of the KJ material that I'd heard didn't strike a chord with me , Radiance is as I say pretty good and remarkably doesn't out-stay its welcome despte being 2 longish CDs.

In fairness I must listen more closely to his output..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

rostasi, jarrett could get pretty funky.  he is about my favorite player on e-piano.

No doubt funky! His work with Miles! BUT,

we all know his attitude about that side of his playing!

Too bad really.

I have to say that I still L-O-V-E

the Fender Rhodes, but Jarrett is not the first person I reach for

when it comes to that - mellow or funky.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For a totally different take on KJ, check out "Expectations". Sure, he's got 'the hair' and a tie-dye t-shirt, but with Charlie Haden, Paul Motian, Sam Brown, Dewey Redman and Airto you have some quality music, too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.