Fretshop Retrospective ECM records day 75

ECM 1495 Sarah Leonard/Christopher Bowers-Broadbent “Gorecki/Satie/Milhaud/Bryars 1993.

More Organ from Lucerne Switzerland, this time with a soprano voice. Some of my favorite modern composers here. Slow moving, profound and heavy, this recording is hard to take until you’re in the mood, which I wasn’t at the moment. Excellent capture of the organ and voice. Couldn’t sound better. Huge Dynamic range. Fantastic performance.

ECM 1496 Aparis “Despite the Fire-Fighter’s Efforts…” 1993.

Markus Stockhausen, trumpet, flugelhorn; Simon Stockhausen, keyboards, soprano sax; Jo Thones, acoustic drums, electronic drums. Back to ECM spacy ambient thing. Oh and a really spacy ambient one right here. Great sonics, lovely movement. The Flugelhorn adds just enough touch of organic to the soaking wet keyboard sounds. Tracked in Oslo Norway July 1992. I kinda like the synth bass and drums against the Flugel soaked in space sauce. It’s cool. Halfway through I got a little synth weary as they launched into synthesized groove land. I was ready to move on…but they went back into space and crazy improv. Back to very interesting again.

ECM 1497 Peter Erskine/John Taylor/Palle Danielsson “You Never Know” 1993.

John Taylor, piano; Palle Danielsson, bass; Peter Erskine, drums. Lovely record by outstanding players. I’m always struck by Erskine’s range. He can slay a groove like nobody else but plays this gentle delicate piano trio stuff with equal sensitivity and appropriateness. His value to ECM since his departure from Weather Report rivals Jack DeJohnette. Danielsson is an amazing bassist with excellent tone and creative approach. His relationship with Taylor is seamless. This is a great record.

ECM 1498 Hal Russell “The Hal Russell Story” 1993.

Five weeks before his death he finished this record with the NRG Ensemble he formed in 1979. It’s a brilliant journey through his musician life as a free jazz pioneer. This is a crazy, funny, clever, romp through his whacked point of view in life. It rocks, it rackets, it instructs, it tumbles down the stairs in a heap. He was just beginning to find global exposure when his heart attack took him at 66 years old. This record is an unwitting epitaph.

ECM 1499 Red Sun, SamulNori “Then Comes The White Tiger” 1994.

Red Sun: Wolfgang Puschnig, alto sax, alto flute; Rick Iannacone, electric guitar; Jamaaladeen Tacuma, bass guitar; Linda Sharrock, voice; SamulNori: Kang Min Seok, buk, ching; Kim Woon Tae, buk, ching, bara; Kim Duk Soo, changgo, piri, hojok, ching; Lee Kwang Soo, k’kwaengwari, vocals, ching; + Kim Sung Woon, komungo, kayagum. Recorded in Seoul Korea 1993. At its core is a percussion unit propelling the music forward as the other instrumentalists and vocalists surf across the wave of relentless drumming. Another crazy fusion of Jazz and world music, in this case, Korean folk. Eicher has a knack for bringing these things to light at ECM and thus to the world. And it’s very cool. I can’t imagine who would buy this at the time it came out. He had to lose money. But its seriously cool, and worthy of a listen. In many ways it’s closer to African music than anything else and as such easier to connect with than other fusion works. In fact, it sounds a whole lot more like that than anything Asian…but I’m no expert on music from Korea.