96

STB Big Band: Live at the Montreux Jazz Festival

Jack Bowers By

Sign in to view read count
Even playing “offstage” (in other words, in an out–of–the–way venue), as the announcer says in introducing the ensemble, performing at the 30th Montreux Jazz Festival must have been one of life’s momentous watermarks for Germany’s youthful STB Big Band, and they certainly give the concert everything they have. Like most bands I’ve heard from that country, amateur or professional, they play well as a unit, but STB has no strong solo voices, and the eight vocals — four by Pedret, three by Mayer, a duet on “All of Me” — are on the whole flat and unimpressive. “It Had to Be You” was not written to accommodate a heavy German accent (Pedret fares better in Spanish on “Sola Naci” and “24000 Baci”), while on “All of Me” he demonstrates that scat–singing is an art form that shouldn’t be undertaken by novices. Among the highlights are a respectable treatment of “Gonna Fly Now” (the theme from Rocky ), Bob Mintzer’s lively mambo “Frankie’s Tune” (nice solo by pianist Gaiswinkler), Paul Ferguson’s Basie–like “Stop Counting” and Dizzy’s fiery “Manteca” (which gives the ensemble a chance to flex its collective muscles and baritone saxophonist Mahlzeit an admirable solo). Decently high marks for the ensemble, but no more than passable for soloists or singers. In other words, a mixed bag — but I’m sure no less exciting for the band whose members can now say proudly, “Hey, everyone, we played the Montreux Jazz Festival.” Good for them!

Track listing: Introduction: Hay Burner; Hard Rock Café; It Had to Be You; Sola Naci; 24000 Baci; Stop Counting; A Night in Tunisia; Gonna Fly Now; Mustang Sally; The Girl from Ipanema; Frankie’s Tune; Almaz; Almost Like Being in Love; Manteca; All of Me (66:20).

Personnel:

Ute G

| Record Label: STB | Style: Big Band


Shop

More Articles

Read Akua's Dance CD/LP/Track Review Akua's Dance
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Daylight Ghosts CD/LP/Track Review Daylight Ghosts
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Live at PafA CD/LP/Track Review Live at PafA
by Matthew Aquiline
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Ocean of Storms CD/LP/Track Review Ocean of Storms
by Troy Dostert
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Transparent Water CD/LP/Track Review Transparent Water
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 20, 2017
Read Billows Of Blue CD/LP/Track Review Billows Of Blue
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 20, 2017
Read "Alameda Gardens" CD/LP/Track Review Alameda Gardens
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 22, 2016
Read "Chronosome" CD/LP/Track Review Chronosome
by Budd Kopman
Published: November 24, 2016
Read "Ida Y Vuelta" CD/LP/Track Review Ida Y Vuelta
by James Nadal
Published: December 30, 2016
Read "Velcro Bird" CD/LP/Track Review Velcro Bird
by John Eyles
Published: September 19, 2016
Read "Out Of The Blue" CD/LP/Track Review Out Of The Blue
by Mark Sullivan
Published: October 15, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!