Jakob Bro, Joe Lovano, Once Around the Room: A Tribute to Paul Motian, ECM *****

In dreams - if you dream music rather than pictorial imagery and we often do - the soundtrack which is always an abstraction and mysterious is something ideally like Once Around the Room: A Tribute to Paul Motian. Collectively a septet - all the …

Published: 28 Sep 2022. Updated: 16 months.

In dreams - if you dream music rather than pictorial imagery and we often do - the soundtrack which is always an abstraction and mysterious is something ideally like Once Around the Room: A Tribute to Paul Motian. Collectively a septet - all the players are leaders of an illustrious nature 5 flying in to Copenhagen from all over - Paris, London, New York, Switzerland and Berlin - for the recording led by the powerhouse US saxophonist Joe Lovano here ostensibly at high avant-garde altitude and by the New Cool School Danish guitar master of Friselliana, Jakob Bro. Both former bandmates of Paul Motian (1931-2011) Lovano is on tenor and tarogato. Other album personnel are double bassists Larry Grenadier and Thomas Morgan, bass guitarist Anders Christensen, drummers Joey Baron and Jorge Rossy. Quiet but extremely intense compositions are by Lo and Bro interspersed with Motian originals that include 'Drum Music'. An album that has momentousness throughout special moments include the time and way that Bro gently guides us into 'Song To An Old Friend'. A balladic mood can be many things and even an elegy which we see this track as and can be all embracingly multi-faceted. So it could be to lost time together, perhaps sadness, perhaps even the loss of contact and such elegiac writing can be devastatingly bleak or just as easily ethereal. And that latter characteristic describes the shadowing of guitar and saxophone that finds Lovano quite Andy Sheppard-like on this track. By contrast he is blisteringly himself on Lo's own 12-tone piece 'As It Should Be' which is superbly anarchic and real and smashes any complacency through this no-nonsence abnegation of ego in pursuit of building through the in-the-moment improvisational spirit an enduring obelisk to Motian of delicate design and beautiful complexity.

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At the Hampstead - today's podcast looks ahead to the appearance of the Sulzmanns - Stan the man and his son Matthew

The father and son combination of saxophone playing Sulzmanns Stan and Matthew in a quintet setting are among the highlights this autumn at the Hampstead Jazz Club - the subject of today's podcast. Tenor titan Stan, 73, a UK jazz icon, is a huge …

Published: 28 Sep 2022. Updated: 17 months.

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The father and son combination of saxophone playing Sulzmanns Stan and Matthew in a quintet setting are among the highlights this autumn at the Hampstead Jazz Club - the subject of today's podcast. Tenor titan Stan, 73, a UK jazz icon, is a huge influence on such next generation pianists as the Methenyian Gwilym Simcock who early in his own career played with Stan in Neon.

Hear Stan in the saxophone section combining with Kenny Wheeler on the sublime 'See Horse' led off by pianist John Horler on Wheeler 1992 Ah Um classic, Kayak.

We loved Stan's work too more recently last year surfacing along with Swiss grands fromages Vein and the Mon Ami Ensemble whose members included Matthew.

Matthew plays soprano and alto sax and studied at the Royal Academy of Music.

Visit the Hampstead Jazz Club website for more details on all autumn gigs announced so far

Matthew Sulzmann top left and Stan Sulzmann. Photo: press

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