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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Ralph Towner / John Abercrombie: Five Years Later

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The long overdue release of Ralph Towner and John Abercrombie's Five Years Later, originally released in 1982, may well be the most eagerly anticipated of the Re:Solutions series that brings into print--on CD (four titles for the first time, Five Years Later previously only available for a limited time in Japan), vinyl and high resolution digital formats--seven historic ECM recordings. Add the three Abercrombie Quartet albums recorded immediately prior to Five Years Later--1979's Arcade, 1980's Abercrombie Quartet and 1981's M, ...

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John Abercrombie Quartet at Library and Archives Canada

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John Abercrombie Quartet TD Ottawa Jazz Festival Winter Jazz Festival, Library and Archives Canada, Ottawa, Canada February 15, 2014 It's always a treat to see some of your jazz heroes performing in your hometown, but it's an even greater pleasure to see some of them performing together in the same group. Guitarist John Abercrombie, pianist Marc Copland and bassist Drew Gress have been working together for nearly two decades, and they've all ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

John Abercrombie Quartet: 39 Steps

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Guitarist John Abercrombie has had a long and successful association with ECM records and for his latest release, 39 Steps, he completes his quartet with a piano. Abercombie had success with this format in the 1970s with Richie Beirach, George Mraz, and Peter Donald, but in the past 10 years his ECM releases have been more focused on his quartet with violinist, Mark Feldman. For his return to this format, Abercrombie has chosen pianist Marc Copland, making ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Peter Brendler and John Abercrombie: The Angle Below

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Peter Brendler and guitarist John Abercrombie have developed their playing partnership over a number of years, but The Angle Below is their first duo recording. Brendler--"the guy on the bass" as he's described in Neil Tesser's sleeve notes--is the nominal leader but he refers to the album as a collaboration. He's not wrong. He may be the driving force behind the project, the man who sorted out the studio, booked the dates, contacted the press and made the coffees, but ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

John Abercrombie Quartet: 39 Steps

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John Abercrombie has rarely played with pianists, at least in his own groups and throughout his extensive discography as a leader for ECM Records that began with the immediate classic, 1975's Timeless. Other than a brief reunion with that record's group for 1984's Night, the veteran guitarist has, in fact, only recorded with one other piano-based group, the quartet responsible for Arcade (1979), Abercrombie Quartet (1980) and M (1981)--all featuring another intrepid improviser, Richie Beirach, and slated for released in ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

John Abercrombie Quartet: Within A Song

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John Abercrombie QuartetWithin A SongECM Records2012In the jazz world, one thing that keeps a lot of fans coming back for more with their favorite artists is the unpredictability factor. It may well be human nature to subconsciously form preconceptions, but with this music, it's usually best to avoid reductionist pigeonholing as, more often than not, it sets self-limiting expectations. Guitarist John Abercrombie has proven, in a career now well into its fifth ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Marc Copland / John Abercrombie: Speak to Me

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Pianist Marc Copland and guitarist John Abercrombie played together for the first time in the 1970s, in drummer Chico Hamilton's group. This was when Copland was playing saxophone, before his seemingly unlikely but very successful switch to piano. Nearly forty years later, the two artists still find opportunities for musical hook-ups, contributing to extraordinary recordings like Copland's Another Place (2008) and Contact's Five on One (2010)--quartet and quintet offerings, respectively, and both for Germany's Pirouet Records. With Speak to Me, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Marc Copland / John Abercrombie: Speak to Me

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Plenty of artists explore that most naked of musical couplings, the duo, but few have mined its intimate potential the way pianist Marc Copland has. Since 2003, the light-of-touch, impressionistically lithe pianist has put out no less than six duo records amongst the more than 15 albums he's released on half a dozen labels--though since 2007, with the exception of a couple reissues, he's remained steadfastly aligned with Germany's increasingly prestigious Pirouet label. Speak to Me isn't ...



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