214

James Choice Orchestra: Live At Moers

Nic Jones By

Sign in to view read count
James Choice Orchestra: Live At Moers Arguably one of the first concerns arising from any 23-piece ensemble is the sheer number of participants. In the case of the James Choice Orchestra, however, the issue of unwieldiness doesn't arise. The depth of compositional touch is such that it surmounts such a problem and the result is music of great variety and timbre.

These points are arguably best exemplified by Frank Gratkowski's "Choice III" where the impression is of the ensemble being broken down into small, almost compressed units, especially when the parade ground pastiche of Joe Hertenstein's drums seem to be shaping the music from the bottom up. The multi-textual nature of the piece is emphasized in the work of a sadly unaccredited trumpet soloist in a passage which comes as close as anything here to overtly acknowledging established precedent.

This is not entirely unprecedented music however. It's simply the fact of the matter that what's happening here is part of a still open-ended continuum instigated by the likes of the London Jazz Composers and Globe Unity Orchestra. As such the realization of Carl Ludwig Hubsch's "Floating Fragments" is as much as anything else here, a testament to a finely honed ensemble, one cognizant with the fact that roughness and the avoidance of studied finesse can be highly effective tools in music making. There is thus nothing of what might be called the primacy of the composer or his ideas and that in itself is rife with political implications. At base, this is profoundly democratic music, and to the point at which not even the soloist reigns supreme, a point underscored by the overall program, where soloists are conspicuous only by their absence.

Even silence or near-silence has a part to play, so profoundly inclusionist is the music in the case of Matthias Schubert's "Manico con la mia" where perhaps even the idea of the large ensemble itself is subverted. In the deployment of small sounds set against atonal blasts and the odd scream from one of the vocalists the music proceeds through a rare form of fractious logic and to a greater or lesser extent, that's true of the entire program.

Track Listing: Floating Fragments; Berichte aus der neuen Stadt; Choice III; Manico con la mia.

Personnel: Stefan Meinberg: trumpet; Thomas Heberer: trumpet; Udo Moll: trumpet; Matthias Mainz: trumpet; Matthias Muche: trombone; Nikolao Valiensi: trombone; Carl Ludwig Hubsch: tuba, composition; Melvyn Poore: tuba; Frank Gratkowski: alto sax, clarinets, composition; Matthias Schubert: tenor sax, composition; Norbert Stein: tenor sax, composition; Niels Kline: tenor sax, clarinets; Annette Maye: clarinet, bass clarinet; Philip Zoubek: piano; Thomas Lehn: synthesizer; Scott Fields: guitar; Tom Lorenz: vibes; Radek Stawartz: violin; Scott Roller: cello; Sebastian Gramss: bass; Joe Hertenstein: drums; Barbara Schachtner: vocal, voice; Isis Kruger: voice.

Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Moers Music | Style: Modern Jazz


comments powered by Disqus

Shop

More Articles

Read This Is Beautiful Because We Are Beautiful People CD/LP/Track Review This Is Beautiful Because We Are Beautiful People
by Matthew Aquiline
Published: May 29, 2017
Read Nigerian Spirit CD/LP/Track Review Nigerian Spirit
by James Nadal
Published: May 29, 2017
Read The Colours Suite CD/LP/Track Review The Colours Suite
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 29, 2017
Read Les Liasons Dangereuses 1960 CD/LP/Track Review Les Liasons Dangereuses 1960
by Mark Corroto
Published: May 29, 2017
Read Chapter Five CD/LP/Track Review Chapter Five
by Jack Bowers
Published: May 28, 2017
Read The Hive CD/LP/Track Review The Hive
by Edward Blanco
Published: May 28, 2017
Read "True Love Collection" CD/LP/Track Review True Love Collection
by Roger Farbey
Published: November 24, 2016
Read "Invisible Touch At Taktlos Zurich" CD/LP/Track Review Invisible Touch At Taktlos Zurich
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: May 7, 2017
Read "New York Connections" CD/LP/Track Review New York Connections
by David A. Orthmann
Published: September 18, 2016
Read "Umbrella Weather" CD/LP/Track Review Umbrella Weather
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: January 24, 2017
Read "Trillium Falls" CD/LP/Track Review Trillium Falls
by Jack Bowers
Published: April 5, 2017
Read "Cave Art" CD/LP/Track Review Cave Art
by Rokas Kucinskas
Published: August 20, 2016

Why wait?

Support All About Jazz and we'll deliver exclusive content, hide ads, hide slide-outs, and provide read access to our future articles.

Buy it!