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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Keith Jarrett: La Fenice

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The archival gap tightens between the earlier solo release of Keith Jarrett's mid-90s concert, as captured on A Multitude of Angels (ECM, 2016), and his post-illness return to live performing. La Fenice was recorded at the Gran Teatro La Fenice in Venice, in 2006, four years after Jarrett had returned to solo performing in Japan. The double album closely corresponds with Jarrett's Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement award from the International Festival of Contemporary Music of the Biennale di Venezia. ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Keith Jarrett: After the Fall

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If, after thirty five years and dozens of standard bearing recordings you're not spoiled rotten, or decisively worse, indifferent to the mythic elegance and boundless creativity of the Standards Trio, then welcome gratefully the latest two-disc chronicle, After The Fall. Recorded on November 14, 1998 at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, this was Keith Jarrett's first live performance after his near career-ending bout with chronic fatigue syndrome. Recorded on a DAT (like the monumental pre-CFS box set Multitude of ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Keith Jarrett / Gary Peacock / Jack DeJohnette: After The Fall

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In the year between ECM releases Tokyo '96 (1997) and Whisper Not (1999), Keith Jarrett's iconic Standards Trio returned to live performances following a two-year break. Jarrett's bout with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome left him physically and emotionally drained, but with the condition in check, his expressive passion and physical enthusiasm return in full force with After The Fall. The two-disc set was recorded at a concert in Newark, New Jersey in late 1998. If it appears that picking ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Keith Jarrett: A Multitude of Angels

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Music is fundamentally a spiritual experience, but it's still rare for Keith Jarrett to be as forthright about it as he is in the liner notes to A Multitude of Angels. Occasionally he's written oblique blurbs vaguely touching on the mysteries of inspiration--after all, the music always speaks best for itself. By contrast, here he's admirably candid about being helped through the trying circumstances under which he recorded these discs in October 1996: unexplainably weakened with what turned out to ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Keith Jarrett: A Multitude of Angels

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The phrase “triumph of the human spirit" may be commonly used, but rarely in musical contexts. There have, however, been relatively recent examples of such achievements, like when Michael Brecker managed to not just make it into the studio, six months before he died from a fatal blood disorder in early 2007, but delivered one of the (if not the) best performances of his career, on the saxophonist's studio swan song, Pilgrimage (Heads Up, 2007). But a little ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Keith Jarrett: A Multitude of Angels

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In the last solo concert tour of the first half of Keith Jarrett's career, the preeminent pianist of our time had, himself, recorded the performances across four Italian locations, on his digital audio tape machine. These would be the final public performances Jarrett would give for a number of years as he worked through chronic fatigue syndrome. On a concert timeline, A Multitude of Angels follows the 1995 performances captured on La Scala (ECM, 1997) but with an unexplained twenty-year ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Keith Jarrett at Carnegie Hall

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Keith Jarrett Carnegie Hall New York, NY February 9, 2016 Watching fans eagerly photographing a player-less piano, as if in hopes of visualizing forces only Keith Jarrett can translate at the keyboard, I couldn't help wondering what it was all for. Neither could he. Anticipations were nevertheless high as the audience prepared for a night of fully improvised music by that format's most widely heard practitioner. Jarrett took to the stage ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Keith Jarrett At The National Concert Hall, Dublin

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Keith Jarrett National Concert Hall Dublin, Ireland November 17, 2015 Following a solo performance in Dublin's National Concert Hall in 1982, Keith Jarrett's Irish fans would have to wait thirty one years for his return--another solo gig, in early 2013. Therefore, the news that Dublin was on Jarrett's short European tour 2015 was met with surprise and delight in equal measure in the Irish capital. Inevitably enough, tickets sold out in the blink of an ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Arvo Part: Musica Selecta: A Sequence By Manfred Eicher

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Talented, urbane, and well-informed colleagues like John Kelman often make for a difficult act to follow. Kelman has long been the All About Jazz resident expert on all things ECM. Occasionally, his reportage does intersect with mine as in the present case of Estonian composer Arvo Pärt (b. 1935). I want to refer the reader first to Kelman's vital coverage of the recent Arvo Part: Musica Selecta: A Sequence by Manfred Eicher (ECM, 2015). The importance of this composer, this ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Keith Jarrett: Keith Jarrett: Creation

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With the simultaneous release of his latest classical album Barber/ Bartók /Jarrett, the forty-plus year ECM mainstay, Keith Jarrett issues an unusually conceived solo piano compilation, Creation. During his first twenty years of solo releases on Manfred Eicher's iconic label--beginning with Facing You (1971)--Jarrett's solo output had been prodigious and has secured his place as the best and most creative pianist/composer of the age. While the releases kept coming, health problems in the 90s curtailed his output of live solo ...