Friday 29 April 2016

Art Lande and Rubisa Patrol in the missing 1979 Story of Ba-Ku, by request

I made the bottom extra large expressly for the purpose of getting an idea of what this story is about.
I believe it was written by Art though it's described as 'liner notes.'  I will let you judge for yourselves whether or not this short story, or rather two short stories, are deserving of the "persistence of memory."

This is the missing LP from his work with Rubisa Patrol starting with the ST Rubisa album (1976), definitely a masterpiece, and the subsequent Desert Patrol (1978).  Side A appears to me to be entirely improvised and definitely drags, even with the obnoxious scratch that interferes with the playing throughout the first five minutes or so and causes it to skip ahead, I will go so far as to say I don't dislike said scratch at all.  The second side has the full band but is still fully extempore, so far as I can tell.  At times (on both sides) Art plays the strings inside the acoustic grand by swiping them with his fingers-- a trick that we have heard many times in early modern classical music when it was truly given to abstraction.  I'm a bit disappointed with the cover drawings on lined, perforated paper, attributed to "Gorilla Graphics: Melinda Wentzell" I thought for sure it would be a bandmember's amateurish attempts.

Composed By – Art Lande
"The Story Of Ned Tra La" recorded live August 20, 1977, Kuumbwa Jazz Center, Santa Cruz, California
"The Story Of Ba-Ku" recorded August 21, 1978, 1750 Arch Studios, Berkeley, California

Wednesday 27 April 2016

Talgorn, Izzanelli, Rimbert, Attard, etc. in April Orchestra Vol. 56: Compilation Jingles [1984] by request [plus lossless]

Like a viral rash you can't get rid of (hopefully not the dreaded Zika) it's back, our AO series...  Each time I ask myself why do I punish myself like this-- (and this was definitely a bitter torture when you consider there were 25 tracks on side b most only 15 seconds long)-- oh yes now I remember, once in a while, like with RCA Volume 15, a track emerges that lights up my life like a rocket and will illuminate it for what feels like a thousand years...

First of all, composing information can be found here.  Note the presence again of Romanelli (here called Izanelli) from Vol. 38 wherein the combo with Jannick Top proved very fruitful.  In fact, the first track, for which he is part responsible, is quite nice, and surely appeared in one of those old French movies with undressed stars lounging by a summer beach cottage talking about philosophy and who to have sex with:

Can you believe the title of that composition is Rocking Chair?  That surely is the worst title selection in the whole of the AO series.

Subsequently, Rimbert's A2 track is a little disappointing.  But another favourite Talgorn (Vol. 57) returns at A3 with the oddly titled, but well-composed Fish Race:

The majority of side B is given over to L. Attard, whom I did not like in his earlier record.  A representative track by him would be the last one, with its gentle harp strumming accompanied by vibes-- it's a true shame he didn't develop these ideas more fully, but at least he abandoned the obnoxiously French accordion:

Monday 25 April 2016

The Bob Bath Band, Traces of Illusion from 1984 USA

Kind of like a library fusion album with different thoughts, good ones and sometimes excellent ones, but perhaps failing to come together as a whole, I was reminded of this one after posting Aurora Borealis-- not that they are similar,  but because it was also featured on Tom's Cd reissue.

This is all instrumental electric guitar music with a distinct twinlike resemblance to the early Glenn Phillips albums, Lost at Sea, and Swim in the Wind.  If anyone hasn't heard those two, make every effort to do so soon, they are really worth listening to.  At one time long ago they were posted on the mutant sounds blog as can be archaeologically seen there still.  A tragic demise in the blogosphere that was.  But it remains as a powerful resource encyclopaedia for progressive music of the past, I only wish song samples had been added, as we do here, so that you could still get a taste of the posts now that links have been deleted everywhere.

The first Bob Bath track, Sunrise, authentically introduces you to the style:

A track called Wheel is quite well composed, esp. as library music:

Incidentally the record review blurb on the bottom of the back is interesting to read, with its hesitating attempts to classify this style.  That obsession they had back then with slotting music into its proper category-- the inevitable apologies when it didn't adhere to its type-- and the penalty for those poor artists who tried to break free into more creative amalgams-- how limiting it all appears to us now!

Enjoy this lost gem.

Saturday 23 April 2016

Manfred Schoof with Mal Waldron together in DDR's Amiga 8 55 738 (1980) [Plus 1986's Power Station for limited time]

Like the old WhosWho of old, or that even more ancient Almanach de Gotha, it's always nice to see a musician is famous enough to have a wiki page.  From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

Manfred Schoof (born 6 April 1936) is a German jazz trumpet player.  Schoof was born in Magdeburg, and studied music in Kassel and Cologne.  He is a founder of European free jazz and collaborated with Albert Mangelsdorff, Peter Brötzmann, Mal Waldron, and Irène Schweizer. He has interpreted Die Soldaten, an operatic work by the contemporary composer Bernd Alois Zimmermann.

Schoof won various jazz prizes and is involved in the German musical rights association. Since 2007 he has been chairman of the Union Deutscher Jazzmusiker. He has been a professor in Cologne since 1990.

Since 1967 his career has stretched till the most recent years, happily.  One release missing from his oeuvre so far is this record he made in 1980 with the American pianist Mal Waldron, a decade or so older than Manfred, whom we all know from his 1971 fusion opus The Call.

Information on this record:

Artwork – Christoph Ehbets
Bass – Jimmy Woode
Composed By, Piano – Mal Waldron
Drums – Makaya Ntshoko
Photography By – Otto Sill
Saxophone – Steve Lacy
Trumpet – Manfred Schoof

Recorded February 2, 1977 in Wolperath, Germany.
Licensed from Enja Records.

Note that the tracks are lengthy and only the first minute of the first track can appear as a taste of the contents:

It was reissued to CD in Japan more recently and I'll only post a brief link.  The same goes for Power Station, which I had passed up when I was collecting the Schoof oeuvre earlier, on the basis it was too late a year (1986), but it turned out to be highly entertaining ambient almost library-like light synthesizer fusion, ECM-style perhaps, but ten years too late evidently.

Check out the utterly out-of-this-world outta-this-multiverse peaceful gorgeousness of his Galaxy:

As well strongly recommended would be his earlier records 1976's Scales, 1977's Light Lines, 1980's Horizons, 1987's Meditation (more disappointing) and 1989's Shadows and Smiles (teaming up with Rainer Bruninghaus here proved magical).  All dreamy-melancholy ECM stuff.

Wednesday 20 April 2016

Phil Moon's amazing 1987 masterpiece Ozone from Master Plus [lossless; recommended!]

This was ripped or perhaps shared long ago by the library master pornotrond for dusty shelf and I have always felt it really deserved more so today we have wavs to listen to for all you lossless lovers out there.  Speaking of which let's not forget Mothers Day is coming up in less than a month...  yeah I know we all love to be reminded of that one...

First of all in terms of information we have the sparsity of the database to contend with.  The blurb on the back of the record, in addition to advertising its musical contents, mentions that the theme is indeed the Ozone Layer of the Earth (residing in the lower stratosphere) which became such a hot-button issue back in the eighties when it was discovered the CFCs from air conditioning, aerosols, and refrigeration (like freon) were slowly destroying it.  Up there it blocks 99 percent of the sun's ultraviolet-C (worse than UV-A and UV-B the cause of sunburns).  At that time surprising political agreement led to a so-called ban (only for Western countries, in reality) on their production and replacement with similar compounds.  Note that the replacements are powerful greenhouse gases, so we learn once again the lesson that modern life has knock-off effects that inevitably are detrimental to the biosphere.  As well, despite all the back-patting regarding the Montreal protocol for phasing out CFCs, the ozone hole is not repaired and is still enormous.  Here the positive news is mostly that it isn't increasing exponentially like it used to be in the eighties.  But it is still huge and in some years, it's the same size it was back then, when this record was made.  It's amazing how politics has led us to such low standards that a slower rate of progression is reinterpreted as the disappearance of a problem.  There are so many similar issues today like national debts, population increases (apparently the UN has to keep revising upwards its estimate of the final world population peak (about 80 years from now), it may reach as high as double the current 7.3 billion before stabilizing-- clearly a disaster for all of us, or should I say, all our children and grandchildren).  And then, there's the other problem I mentioned with regards to the Amazon rainforest, that a political issue can only be a hot topic once, if it has the misfortune to reappear, it cannot possibly provoke any amount of public consternation...

Anyways back to the music.  The artist Phil Moon is a bit of a mystery, does anyone know if this is a pseudonym as we know is common in these library records?  I find it hard to believe this gentleman dropped in our lap such a fantastic piece of music and nothing else.  As usual I'm shocked at the low reviews on the rateyourmusic site though perhaps I shouldn't be, my wife usually refers to them as 'the mother's basement dwellers'.  Perhaps I'm also included in that description.  To me this is the apotheosis of funk-fusion library invention, with each track offering some musical originality or quirk to make it highly interesting.  There is an endless parade of invention here, musical ideas are developed and thoroughly explored with complete compositional confidence.  Really, a class example of how stunningly these library masters could put together music, and from the verso, note that Phil played all the instruments, including percussion, synths, guitars, bass, the whole rhythm section was laid down as a basis to play atop of.  In some places the originality of the rhythm section reminds me of what the great Stevie Wonder did in his classic early seventies albums (like Talking Book).  Presumably a lot of time was spent in the studio here replaying all the tracks and dubs after the beat was established.  Then that beat was discarded when a new drum section with more syncopation was added.  The intelligent editing out of unnecessary sounds or layers I think is part of what makes this record such a success.  On the other hand the multiple overdubs do contribute to what can be heard as a slight deterioration in some of the tracks (instrument parts), in my opinion.

Now moving on to the label.  This master plus was a bit of a mystery to me, though the description of the production method certainly is entertaining to read, it appears on the back of this, here is the first part of it:

All longplay records included in this "Master Plus" repertoire have been produced or newly mixed up in 24 or 36 track recordings in studios which are on the highest technical level. 
The producers have quite consciously renounced of digital recording equipment so that the analog technique of the multi-track-recorder (mixing up) is in no way weakened. Besides this the analog recording machine can be balanced higher which leads to a considerably increased dynamic volume. Thus high impulses can be reproduced undiminished. 
In order to avoid any tape noise of the recording all "tape to tape" copies have been filtered by "dbx-1" noise reduction system - with a result which is only very slightly different from a digital copy. By choosing a tape speed of 76 cmps in recording and cutting area a positive contribution to the above quality characteristics can be reached.... 
[you can read the rest on this page]

Then I asked my library collector friend about this series which I knew nothing about.

In fact, Master Plus is the German version of Musical Touch Sound - MTS.
Most albums on MTS are re-released on Master Plus with the same or a bit different title.
Compare these two albums for instance:

Edouard Scotto ‎– The Musical World Of Metal And Science Fiction
Label: Master Plus ‎– 38009

Yan Tregger ‎– To The Land Of No Return
Label:Musical Touch Sound ‎– M.T.S. 1005

However, the albums on MTS are a bit richer than Master Plus and considered to be the first release.
BY richer I mean there are more tracks on MTS LPs than Master Plus ones.

Sadly, some titles on the MTS side are missing on Discogs and we don't know exactly whether those titles like OZONE have ever been released on MTS or not.
It's possible that some German composers have been invited to the German side (Master Plus) to perform and then release their albums on this label.
I don't know whether Phil Moon for instance, is German or French.
The only copy of OZONE I got was from a blog by Pornotrond named: DustyShelf.
It's located here exactly.

So there we have it, still a bit of a mystery, this record.
Any information anyone has in this regard would be most appreciated!!

Here are some of my favourite tracks with a brief analysis.  First up the gorgeous wavy feel of Thalassa:

We hear a lot of ocean music (attempted or successful) in these library records but this one, really, stands out.

The next track called Shift is described as "aquatic and syncopated--" what to me is fascinating is the way the composer has crafted a three-part instrumental, each half minute the entire sound or melody is altered, halfway through, a bass run completely changes the direction of the track to an upgoing chord change.  And in terms of the timing think of how much effort it must have taken for one man to lay the tracks on top of each other individually, perhaps erasing earlier basic beat tracks to create a more syncopated and driving sound with fewer metronomic type sounds.

As amazing as that one was, we continue on to the next, Contacts, where there is even more surprising syncopation and the the volume pedal is brought on to incredible effect, and with perfect timing:

Finally, here verbatim is the beginning of the verso blurb at the bottom:

Ozone describes the atmospheric layer shielding our planet from the remaining universe.  With increasing distance to our planet this layer gets wider being less connected to its unity and finally reaching endless freedom.  

On this LP Phil Moon has excellently connected stylistic elements of salsa jazz and rock to a new music, however without keeping strictly to the individual musical styles.  In that way he created a music free from any compulsions or forces so to speak...

And indeed we can say the same about all progressive music, it is free from any compulsions or forces... except beauty.  How sad and undeserving that this record sank without a trace in the late eighties, almost 30 years ago.

Let me add this is one of my all-time favourite library records. As a progressive fusion album, it really is a masterpiece.

Sunday 17 April 2016

Rory Vincent sings the music of Wlodek Gulgowski for their Dream World, 1973, plus Soundcheck

Wow.  Check the bunny with a woman's body on the verso.  Like my wife always loves to say "they must have all been stoned all the time in the seventies..."  Of course my attention was drawn to this record when our wonderful reader commented on the album "Soundcheck" truly a funky masterpiece of insane rhythm and fierce fusionoid fightin' words (presented here below for those who don't have).  I thought I better complete his discography (or here) in case there were more treasures we were missing.  Well, I can return by saying we wasted both time and money, what we are dealing with here is a soulful Elvisish rock or pop album, similar to the earlier even more forgettable album he did for Maritza Horn.  OK, so Soundcheck was his only masterpiece, got it.

Which is not to say this is all the bad, it's just not to our taste.  Some might love these tracks.  Shockingly, the second side is only about 11 minutes long!  

First track:

What a cover though!  Love it.  Surely the stuff of nightmares.

Friday 15 April 2016

Apocalypse's Twilight with Jasper van't Hof from 1980

Words cannot describe the beauty of this music.  I won't even try.
This is cerebral fusionary classical-jazz progressive scaling the highest Himalayan peaks of invention.  How is it possible it's so little known??

The information reveals the presence, in addition to the famous and revered Jasper, of Danish trumpet / flugelhorn player and main composer Allan Botschinsky who was the leader of the supergroup Iron Office.  I'm sorry I was never all that impressed by that outfit.  This album is totally different, somehow everything came together for these guys in the most beautiful way possible, perhaps inspired by the band name and title.   There is a rapturous end of the world atmosphere of profound depth and spirituality that just fills my heart with emotion.  You'll see what I mean.  Consider the eerie track called Down and Down (a Botschinsky composition) with Jasper's trademark synthesizer effects:

The band is rounded out by Bo Stief (bassist and partial composer) and Lennart Gruvstedt on drums.

Thanks to my dear friend for discovering this.  Every day I am grateful to these guys for showing me music I never imagined existing that, sometimes, turns out to be beyond my imagination in beauty and expectation.  If it was just me in this extended project discovering or trying to discover unknown LPs there would be perhaps fewer than one every 1-2 weeks, particularly with my self-imposed limited budget in the low hundreds per month, rather than this embarrassment of riches.  Although the number of those undiscovered must be diminishing with every day that passes and the hunt definitely feels to be getting harder compared to the early 2010s, for sure compared to ten years ago, there still remain enough of those lost gems to make this entire enterprise well worth the effort, and the money.  And always I have to apologize for those records which are fantastic but cannot be shared publically... eventually they will all see the light of day, and sounds of air, too.

Wednesday 13 April 2016

Aurora Borealis with Mitch DeMatoff, USA 1982, by request

Much like the paint by numbers kits we had as children that allowed us to replicate beautiful fawn-filled paintings with crusty unnaturally poor borders, like the American colony of Iraq today perhaps, this is play by numbers fusion: sure there's the synth soloing, the electric guitar twirling about, the odd chord changes, the prime number time signatures, but some kind of creative spark is missing, as you can tell when you hear the entirety of side one-- then, turning the disc over, at the b1 position, horrified you find a cover version of Lady, the godawful pop song by Lionel Ritchie-- I mean, what??

Information here. 

The AC described it to me as: 
"Obscure fusion platter from this (presumably) Los Angeles based group led by keyboardist DeMatoff. Largely excellent high-flying instrumental fusion in the classic RTF mold. The last couple of tracks in particular are absolutely blazing, one of which features a guest spot by Bunny Brunel. Strongly recommended to fans of stuff like Proteus, Spaces, Apprentice, etc.". And really that's all there is to say. I could throw in perhaps Child's Play as another reference, an album we featured recently here. As well as Momentum, Genre, and others of its ilk. It's on the border of fusion and progressive rock. It starts more in a typical early 80s jazz rock mode, but as The AC notes, it really picks up from there. There's some smokin' guitar leads here!

And he proceeded to provide it with a priority 2.  I'm not so sure about that number.  This is definitely not in the same fusionary league as Momentum's Introducing Brad Carlton, or Childs Play, or my old favourite Genre.
I thought the best track was In Search Of, located on side b right after the horrendous fusionoid rendition of Lionel Richie's Lady (which the guys apparently failed to notice):

Incidentally, I notice that Mitch DeMatoff had a great career in music and even posted some videos of the band on his site.  Many thanks to the artist for the history here!
The price of the record has not gone up as was predicted, thankfully.
What do you guys think?  I'd love to hear others' opinions.

Monday 11 April 2016

Uli Harmssen and Jochen Voss in More Than Two (Germany 1986)

A very soothing painting on front cannot prepare you for the computer-geek appearance of the musicians on verso-- made especially jarring by the New York advertised on the white T-shirt.  I know this kind of so-called 'organic jazz' bores some to tears, but in direct relationship to how interesting it's been made, it appeals to my ears from time to time, certainly, when the later P.M. hours are coming up on the yawning clock.  What we have here is a duo with multiple overdubs, obviously, mostly light electric guitar (some acoustic) with saxes (soprano with a bit of alto).  The compositions are quite strong, and it reminds me of Hahn and Nockes there.  The tendency to drag on with tedious strumming, always a magnetic impulse for the guitarist's autopilot sense akin to the Monarch butterfly's powerful migratory instinct to head to Mexican resorts in the fall (interestingly still a mystery to science, as well as tourists in general) is here abated to the utmost.  It's true, there are times when the mind wanders off to other things such as the paradox of why Romanian women can be so attractive (and their country so awful), and why, in my nation, they are admitted in easily at the immigration ministry in the category of skilled workers-- as strippers, but in general this album proves to be a delightful find, costing no more than a palmsworth of crisp clean lowest-denomination bills depending on how cheap or aroused you are.

The first and title track is superb, the recurrent lulling three note pattern being adjusted to different chords is quite admirably clever, somehow inherently suited to a lullaby (a good ex. to me of how abstract musical patterns evoke emotions due to their inherent structure):

In particular note that they are not averse to pulling out a digital keyboard or two in order to break up the head-throbbing monotony of too much guitar strumming, e.g., the last track called Digital Love:

Really, I recommend listening to this on the old-school big-ass earmuff headphones your mother used to hate and your wife now detests, the clarity and beauty of the sounds come through just impossibly perfectly, not to mention the cancellation of all extraneous yelling...

This duo made another album earlier called Mother Nature Father Harmony.  Kind of too new-agey?  Another style that really got a bad rap after its height and is today kind of reviled.

Saturday 9 April 2016

Esa Pethman's Esa and Flutes from 1984

From discogs:

Esa Pethman was a Finnish jazz musician (saxophone, flute), born on May 17th, 1938 in Kuusankoski, Finland. 

Note he was a member of Heikki Sarmanto's Big Band and sextet.  I presented quite a bit of Sarmanto's music in the past and indeed I am happy to see quite a few of his records are easily available for public consumption.  Esa on the other hand is not as well known.  His first album from 1965 (way back in those glory days of Beatlemania), The Modern Sound of Finland, is a masterpiece of modern classical composition played in the jazz idiom, full of researched and creative, one-off ideas, and is highly recommended.  Alas, some two decades later, the intensely adventurous spirit has, inevitably, burned itself out but we still have some really gorgeous and beautifully played chamber jazz-fusion in almost a library mode (great new genre there!) as you can tell from a sample track called Cerulean Blue:

Notice how the trite descending minor bass pattern and melody played on the crystalline electric guitar (the Stairway to Heaven pattern as I've called it before) is made interesting by modulating the whole thing up a whole tone each phrase-- whereupon, after some three steps up suddenly like a flock of birds taking flight the flute sings an altogether different song this time anchored in a major chord with added major seventh, evoking the beauty of a beautiful bright spring sky, perhaps with the minor stanzas representing the fluffy cumulus being herding past.  Really quite brilliant composition and arrangement.

But there are many more such simple delights to find in here.  Altogether, another winning find from my magnificent record-hunter friend...

Wednesday 6 April 2016

RECOMMENDED!!! Gianni Marchetti and the missing RCA April Orchestra Volume 15

So here it is, the big surprise I was referring to last week, last two weeks...  
and it surely is a beauty!

At last this final one missing from the RCA Series of Ital-AO's can be heard, of course, it's by Gianni Marchetti.  I think I spoke about him at length in the post on his magnificent Solstice album.   Which was truly a lost masterpiece of composition.  Someday I will nail those other two that are contemporaneous, Iris and Gimmick, and perhaps provide everyone with the great pleasure of hearing them too.... I hope!
Anyways,  I'll be honest, this by comparison is definitely a mixed bag, with some standard-clause library tunes like A1's Mexico Border (probably written in a state of anesthesia, or while he was sitting in his underpants), some pretty gratuitous silliness maybe for some slapstick comedy with that balding curly-haired Italian comedian that starred everywhere in the seventies frantically running about while beautiful big-bosomed starlets slept with all kinds of leading men, there's some bona-fide righteous funkiphizing, but then, abruptly, there's some really gorgeous Italian soundtracky Morricone stuff like A3's Over:

Check out how the high F over a 7-octave (!) below bass D creates the Dminor sound on the grand piano, which is later echoed with a high C over the tonic key of F.  The arrangement of the strings is just superb.  Unbelievable mastery of composition here.  (It makes me weep to think of the classical music being played in concert halls all over the world at the expense of stuff like this.)  And to close out, that fantastic high note D plays again at the end, like a bell tolling, because:

"Don't ask for whom the bell tolls,
It tolls for thee..."

[Who wrote that again? was it Milton? or Pope?]

Stay tuned till the end, difficult as it may seem around halfway through the second side (when it sounds like he forgot to get dressed after a bathroom break), because the last track called Equinox is a real stunner showing to me very clearly the influence of Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon with the slide guitar effects and the wordless yelling/singing of the infamous, inimitable, Great Gig in the Sky...  
Yes, that Great Gig in the Sky will be something we'll all hear one day, all of us...

But before that, we have the most utmost beautiful music to leave us with the happiness of miracles.  

Like I've said before, for those like us who love music, this is the closest we will get to heaven in our lifetimes.  

That last track was well worth the price of admission here, without a doubt... you won't believe your ears!

Monday 4 April 2016

Jari Perkiömäki Quartet from 1985


This appeared earlier, following the Jarmo Savolanien, with an erroneous side 1 -- sorry for this, below will be the correct album.  Please change your download accordingly!!

The second and very similar (to the previous) Finnish fusion album with a distinct ECM (and Van't Hof) style.  Listen to the gorgeous uplifting tenor sax of the ultra-melodious & lush A2 Ballad:

--where the modulation halfway through is augmented by the cumulonimbus synthesizer strings to provide an aerodynamic take-off feeling...

Sadly this appears to be the only release from this line-up.  (A solo CD was made in 1997.)  The bio for Jari does note the following:

Finnish jazz saxophonist, composer and instructor (1987-1997), lecturer (1997-2000), the head of the Department of Jazz (2000-2009) and vice rector (2009 onwards) at the Sibelius Academy. Born on April 13, 1961.

Again, the education is both deep and deeply evident here.

Many thanks to my Finnish Connection for helping us make this spring so beautiful.  His generosity never ceases to astonish me, particularly when I glance by chance at the price of some of the records that he is sharing for free with all of us.

Towson State College Jazz Ensemble's 2 + 2 = 5, from 1975 [lossless again]

The idea behind music minus one was to give budding performers a chance to play along with a record, performing the soloist role.  So for example the same music and release would be minus piano, minus trumpet, minus drummer, etc., depending on which you were practicing.  Here we have the complete record though for listening purposes (except maybe the didgeridoo).  This particular ensemble, hailing from the amazing police state of Baltimore, Maryland, made many records in these glory seventy-days and this is their first.  Note that the numbers of the title suggest odd time signatures, done so subtly that to my ears I cannot admit I even noticed though the blurbs for each piece explain them: 7/4 or 11/4, etc.  The leader was Hank Levy, who navigated this outfit throughout.  He had connections with the great Stan Kenton who pioneered the odd times trend in jazz, so far as I know.

On the back notice they don't display the faces of the performers-- too bad, I was certainly curious to know how many African-American faces were present, was their a handful, or as we love to say in my family, as many as my foot fingers? or perhaps as many as my amputated hand, as was the case with the Northern Illinois Group?  Or, probably, they skipped the group photo session in case they were accidentally shot by the police while sitting and saying cheese, or because cops mistook their piccolo for a firearm, or they were worried they'd be accidentally strangulated while sitting in the back of police cruiser...

The track called Pete is a Four-Letter Word (written for Peter Erskine of the Stan Kenton Orch.) is a good example of the style:

As always with these big band opuses the album ends in a slow-motion song which disappointed slightly as it never jumped off its safe platform of D minor.  And went well over eleven minutes...  soporific, at any rate.

Altogether, certain tracks are phenomenal here.  Well worth the money this time.  Not that the money was much.

Sunday 3 April 2016

Jersey City State Jazz Ensemble's Take One: Music Minus One (Complete) from 1975 [lossless]

Apparently the only release from this collective.  Note there are different versions with one instrument missing (hence the appellation minus one), for the benefit of practicing soloists.

You can listen to the lovely groove they get going on Dancing Men, albeit in the uber-simplistic C major key, a composition by one John Labarbera:

Friday 1 April 2016

Dalton Jazz Ensemble's First Time Out from 1978

This particular school is in New York City.  A little more amateurish here.
Sample track, Sidewalk Spring a composition by Jamie Lawrence: