That Time ... CD Not Two (Poland), 1972/1980. New Copy ...
Very rare work from this legendary improvising orchestra – two different recordings from the first decade or so of the group's existence, at a time when they were hardly making any records at all! The first two long tracks are from a 1972 performances in Germany – and feature an early version of the group conducted by Buxton Orr, but with leader Barry Guy in strong formation – in a very large lineup that includes saxes from Evan Parker, Mike Osborne, Trevor Watts, and Alan Wakeman; trumpets from Kenny Wheeler, Harry Beckett, Mark Charig, and Dave Holdsworth; trombones from Paul Rutherford, Mike Gibbs, and Paul Nieman; guitar from Derek Bailey; piano from Howard Riley; percussion and drums from Paul Lytton and Tony Oxley; and more bass from Jeff Clyne and Chris Laurence. The players' ability to move in ways that are both cohesive and individual is breathtaking – on the long selections "Watts Parker Beckett To Me Mr Riley" and "Statements III". Next are two more tracks recorded in London in 1980 – one live, one studio – with some of the same players, but also the addition of Peter Brotzmann and Tony Coe on saxes, Philipp Wachsmann on violin, and John Stevens on percussion – on the tracks "Quasimode III" and "Appolysian". CD
The greatest album to date from Ken Vandermark's Territory Band – and a record that firmly places the group in a lineage of experimental jazzorchestrations that runs from Duke Ellington through Charles Mingus and the later work of the LondonJazzComposersOrchestra! There's a strength here that goes beyond any of the group's earlier efforts – and although some numbers continue their freely improvised moments, others fall into a straighter, even more focused sound – one that's got the boldness of Mingus at its best, with lots of powerful passages that give way to even more personal solo moments. Players include Ken Vandermark, Fredrik Ljungkvist, and Dave Rempis on reeds; Axel Dorner on trumpet, Johannes Bauer on trombone, Paul Lytton and Paal Nilssen-Love on percussion, Jim Baker on piano, Kent Kessler on bass, and Fred Lonberg-Holm on cello. 3CD set features 2 studio discs and 1 live radio performance – with titles that include "Fall With A Vengeance", "Untitled Fiction", "Corrosion", "Cards", and live performances of all numbers on disc 3. CD
A wonderful large format recording from bassist Barry Guy – working here at the head of the Blue Shroud Band, an improvising ensemble that echoes some of his earlier work with the LondonJazzComposersOrchestra! The extended work is an expansion of an earlier piece that Guy recorded with pianist Marilyn Crispell – her Three Poems For Cecil Taylor – stretched out here with a more embellished sense of imagination, but still using some of the core texts created by Crispell for the original work! The piece spans five long CDs – with sections broken down and notated to reflect the work of the many great improvisers in the set – a lineup that includes Michel Godard on serpent and tuba, Agusti Fernandez on piano, Torben Snekkestad on soprano and tenor, Jurg Wickihalder on soprano and alto, Percy Pursglove on trumpet, Julius Gabriel on baritone and soprano, Maya Homburger on violin, Fanny Paccoud on viola, Ben Dwyer on guitar, and both Ramon Lopez and Lucas Niggli on percussion. Savina Yannatou provides voice on the poetic passages, Guy plays bass and leads – and the whole thing is beautifully packaged! CD