Leo Cuypers: Heavy Days Are Here Again
Bennink’s prismatic traps play lightens the otherwise somber “Misha,” a piece dedicated to Dutch pianist Mengelberg, but the lyrical shift is short as “Be-Bach” returns things to a buoyantly upbeat mood via a piebald Monkish theme and a portly protracted solo from Gorter. The smoky lens of Breuker’s clarinet and Bennink’s precision press rolls converge on “Blue Tango” evoking dusky Argentine sunsets and signaling that the end is nigh. “Couperin” starts out as something of the odd track out melding pre-recorded speech samples to Bennink’s unctuous trombone before detonating into a glorious collective improvisation and suddenly the disc is over. In the liners Cuypers makes the self-deprecating claim that the group’s live recordings were far superior to their studio dates. Listening to the stirring sonic snapshots recorded (and now thankfully reissued) here for posterity it’s a shame those concerts weren’t documented also.
Track Listing: Happy Days/ Als dat de olifant
Personnel: Leo Cuypers- piano; Willem Breuker- saxophones, Bb clarinet; Han Bennink- drums, C-Melody saxophone, trombone; Arjen Gorter- bass.
Record Label: Atavistic Worldwide
Style: Modern Jazz