149

Hans Koller: Wild Roses

Chris May By

Sign in to view read count
Hans Koller: Wild Roses Composer/orchestrator/pianist Hans Koller's most groundbreaking achievements to date have been his big band projects, which have picked up and carried forward in the UK the playful and quirky iconoclasm of the late, marvellous Loose Tubes. Mentored early on by veteran experimentalist Michael Gibbs, and building too on Gil Evans' textural inventions, Koller's big bands—which feature emergent young stylists alongside major names like Stan Sulzmann, Julian Siegel, Henry Lowther, and Evan Parker—are in the tradition but always pushing and tickling the envelope.

This new trio album with bassist Dave Whitford and drummer Gene Calderazzo, regular small group and big band compadres, is a more conventional and rough and ready affair than Koller's big bands. Recorded on-the-hoof in a day last summer, it's a romping, exuberant, standards and head arrangements shaped affair, with consistently dynamic, high energy contributions from all three players (only Bill Frisell's midway "Throughout" and Koller's closing "Paris Blues" cool and slow down to the relatively reflective).

Standouts are Herbie Nichols' "2300 Skidoo" and "The Third World," Mingus' gorgeous "Peggy's Blue Skylight," and Koller's "Wild Roses" and "Paris Blues," the first elliptical, the second lushly lyrical. The two Monk covers, "Pannonica" and "Bye-Ya," don't go anywhere we haven't been before, but they're boss tunes, performed with muscle and respect.

Unapologetically in the pre-EST piano trio tradition—in energy, expansiveness and in-the-moment abandon—Wild Roses harks back to the great trio albums Hampton Hawes made with Red Mitchell and Chuck Thompson in the mid '50s. But unlike Hawes, and as an added bonus, Koller gives generous space to his partners on the bass and drums, and these two men fill it with plenty of their own fire and passion.

Not a revolution then, but a good time ruckus to be sure.


Track Listing: 2300 Skidoo; Remember Rockefeller At Attica; Wild Roses; Peggy's Blue Skylight; Throughout; The Third World; The Eternal City; Pannonica; Bye-Ya; Paris Blues.

Personnel: Hans Koller, piano; Dave Whitford, bass; Gene Calderazzo, drums.

Year Released: 2005 | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read Road to Forever CD/LP/Track Review Road to Forever
by Jack Bowers
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Avenida Graham CD/LP/Track Review Avenida Graham
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 27, 2017
Read TAI Fest #1 (Vol.1&2) CD/LP/Track Review TAI Fest #1 (Vol.1&2)
by Nicola Negri
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Goat Man & The House of the Dead CD/LP/Track Review Goat Man & The House of the Dead
by Dave Wayne
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Backlog CD/LP/Track Review Backlog
by James Nadal
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Acceptance CD/LP/Track Review Acceptance
by Tyran Grillo
Published: February 26, 2017
Read "Ears Are Filled With Wonder" CD/LP/Track Review Ears Are Filled With Wonder
by John Sharpe
Published: August 20, 2016
Read "Strong Tea" CD/LP/Track Review Strong Tea
by Roger Farbey
Published: October 27, 2016
Read "As subtle as tomorrow" CD/LP/Track Review As subtle as tomorrow
by Glenn Astarita
Published: April 9, 2016
Read "Sunrain" CD/LP/Track Review Sunrain
by Geno Thackara
Published: November 25, 2016
Read "Groovin' Hard: Live At The Penthouse 1964-1968" CD/LP/Track Review Groovin' Hard: Live At The Penthouse 1964-1968
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: January 18, 2017
Read "For The Unknown" CD/LP/Track Review For The Unknown
by Mark Sullivan
Published: April 19, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: Jazz Near You | GET IT  

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!