Make a difference: Support jazz online

Support All About Jazz Your friends at All About Jazz are looking for readers to help back our website upgrade project. Of critical importance, this project will result in a vastly improved design across all devices and will make future All About Jazz projects much easier to implement. Click here to learn more about this project including donation rewards.

223

The Thilo Wolf Big Band: Swing It! Volume II

Jack Bowers By

Sign in to view read count
Cloning sheep? Small potatoes. Pianist Thilo Wolf has cloned an entire big band! On Swing It!, Volume II his German–based ensemble is practically a mirror image of the late pianist Gene Harris’s SuperBand which recorded three albums in 1987–90 for Concord Records, and Wolf himself sounds so much like the irrepressible Harris that it’s downright spooky. Is that a good thing? On balance, yes; Harris fronted a marvelous all–star band, and so does Wolf. There’s nothing disagreeable about that, nor about the music presented on Swing It!, which is consistently bold and bracing. As Harris did on the first of his three albums, Wolf employs the services of two vocalists, Etta Cameron and Allan Harris, who are featured on seven of the twelve selections. Again, there’s not a great deal of difference between them and Gene Harris’s choices, Ernestine Anderson and Ernie Andrews. Cameron is showcased on “For Once in My Life,” “’S Wonderful” and “Yardbird Suite,” Harris on “Looking at the World Through Rose–Colored Glasses,” “The Girl from Ipanema,” “My One and Only Love” and “On a Clear Day.” The band has the stage to itself in this concert recording only on the first three numbers (“Mr. Grooverix,” Ray Brown’s “Gumbo Hump,” “Swinging Fingers”), Cole Porter’s “It’s All Right with Me” and the blistering finale, “Makin’ Boom Boom,” on which Wolf moves from piano to drums to trade volleys with the ensemble’s resident sharpshooter, sure–handed Wolfgang Haffner. Elsewhere, his assertive piano is the dominant voice, whether soloing or providing a chordal road map for the band. The other soloists are baritone saxophonist Thomas Zoller, trombonist Gerhard Fink and trumpeter Franz Weyerer (“Mr. Grooverix,” which is the name of one of Wolf’s other albums); Haffner and trumpeter Lennart Axelsson (“Gumbo Hump”); tenor saxophonist Axel Kühn (“It’s All Right with Me”); Haffner and trumpeter Felice Civitereale (“Swinging Fingers”). A mixed bag whose instrumental tracks are strong enough to earn a lukewarm endorsement.

Contact:Mons Records, Taubenplatz 42, 67705 Trippstedt, Germany. Web site, www.monsrecords.de; e–mail monsmu@aol.com


Track Listing: Mr. Grooverix; Gumbo Hump; Swinging Fingers; For Once in My Life;

Personnel: Thilo Wolf, piano, drums (12), leader; Norbert Nagel, Otto Staniloi (1

Title: Swing It! Volume II | Year Released: 2001 | Record Label: Mons

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Latin Grooves
MDL Erike-Musikverlag
1995
buy
I Got Rhythm
MDL Erike-Musikverlag
1994
buy

More Articles

Read Live at Pyatt Hall CD/LP/Track Review Live at Pyatt Hall
by Jack Bowers
Published: January 23, 2018
Read Flying Heart CD/LP/Track Review Flying Heart
by Troy Dostert
Published: January 23, 2018
Read The 3Dom Factor: Live in Krakow CD/LP/Track Review The 3Dom Factor: Live in Krakow
by John Sharpe
Published: January 23, 2018
Read Solano Canyon CD/LP/Track Review Solano Canyon
by Glenn Astarita
Published: January 23, 2018
Read Lucas CD/LP/Track Review Lucas
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: January 22, 2018
Read In Paris: The Definitive ORTF Recording CD/LP/Track Review In Paris: The Definitive ORTF Recording
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: January 22, 2018
Read "Another Night: The Sire Recordings 1979-1981" CD/LP/Track Review Another Night: The Sire Recordings 1979-1981
by Doug Collette
Published: December 3, 2017
Read "UpRoot" CD/LP/Track Review UpRoot
by David Rocheleau-Houle
Published: December 29, 2017
Read "BACHanalia" CD/LP/Track Review BACHanalia
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 24, 2017
Read "Blue Maqams" CD/LP/Track Review Blue Maqams
by John Kelman
Published: October 13, 2017
Read "Lionsong" CD/LP/Track Review Lionsong
by David A. Orthmann
Published: April 18, 2017
Read "Dream a Little Dream" CD/LP/Track Review Dream a Little Dream
by Victor L. Schermer
Published: November 16, 2017