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ALBUM REVIEWS

Terje Rypdal: Bleak House

Read "Bleak House" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Psychedelic rock was hardly a recognized genre in 1967 Norway, but it was where a self-taught guitarist, barely out of his teens, made a brief stop on his way to becoming a global force in music. Terje Rypdal recorded a single album with a group called The Dream that year. The group subsequently signed with Polydor Records and disbanded before recording again. It proved to be an open door for Rypdal as he stayed with the label under cover of ...

REDISCOVERY

Terje Rypdal: If Mountains Could Sing

Read "Terje Rypdal: If Mountains Could Sing" reviewed by John Kelman

Terje RypdalIf Mountains Could Sing ECM Records1995 Today's Rediscovery is If Mountains Could Sing, an album that stands out in Terje Rypdal's career for its marriage of his two seemingly (but clearly not necessarily) divergent paths: one, the rock-edged improvising guitarist; the other, the classical composer of contemporary music first inspired when he heard the music of microtonal groundbreaker György Ligeti in Stanley Kubrick's similarly innovative 1978 film, 2001: A Space Odyssey. It ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Terje Rypdal: Melodic Warrior

Read "Melodic Warrior" reviewed by John Kelman

Some albums are worth the wait, even if that wait is a full decade. The lion's share of guitarist Terje Rypdal's Melodic Warrior is devoted to the nine-movement title suite, a 2003 recording with the Bruckner Orchester Linz and, most importantly, the Hilliard Ensemble, the vocal ensemble that leapt to greater fame with Officium (ECM, 1993), the first of three recordings with Rypdal's fellow countryman, Norwegian saxophonist Jan Garbarek. The four-movement “And the Sky was Coloured with Waterfalls and Angels," ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Terje Rypdal: Crime Scene

Read "Crime Scene" reviewed by Ian Patterson

Such is the strength of the ECM aesthetic--visually as well as musically--that it's one of very few record labels in the history of jazz that is referred to describe a person's musical tastes. The northern European jazz sound which Manfred Eicher has made synonymous with his fabled label--cool, spacious, pastoral--colors the majority of ECM releases, so it's something of a surprise to be confronted by guitarist Terje Rypdal rocking out, backed by the seventeen-piece Bergen Big Band, crashing drums, swirling ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Terje Rypdal: Crime Scene

Read "Crime Scene" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Norwegian guitarist and ECM principal, Terje Rypdal has defied narrow and expedient labels throughout his long career. Originally a rocker, he joined Jan Garbarek's quartet (and ECM) in 1969. In the course of his career, he has composed a number of symphonies, two operas, a violin concerto and many modern works that, as often as not, elude genre definitions. Rypdal's quantity and quality of jazz and free jazz compositions may skew his profile toward jazz, but his versatility and the ...

INTERVIEWS

Terje Rypdal: In A Miles Mood

Read "Terje Rypdal: In A Miles Mood" reviewed by R.J. DeLuke

Norwegian guitar icon Terje Rypdal surfaced more than three decades ago as a new guitar voice, but he strode out of the fields of rock music, not jazz. He was influenced a great deal by the electronic jazz/fusion of the late 1960s and early 1970s and his early work with the likes of saxophonist Jan Garbarek and renowned composer George Russell brought him to the eye of American listeners, through the ECM label with which he has been affiliated since ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Terje Rypdal: Vossabrygg

Read "Vossabrygg" reviewed by John Kelman

You don't need to know that Vossabyrgg means literally “Vossa Brew" to recognize this homage to the late trumpeter Miles Davis. From the first notes of “Ghostdancing"--which quotes directly from “Pharoah's Dance" on Miles' 1970 classic, Bitches Brew--it's clear that Norwegian guitarist Terje Rypdal is mining turf similar to early records like What Comes After (ECM, 1974). He even emulates producer Teo Macero's editing innovations by returning to the theme two-thirds of the way through the track. Rypdal does it ...