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struts
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Soul of Things

This great disc has been in heavy rotation recently chez struts and the more I listen to it the more it grows on me. Trumpeter Tomasz Stanko alludes to some semi-familiar themes (e.g. the Polish national anthem) as well as the 'signatures' of some jazz trumpet legends, yet at the same time the music does not seem at all derivative.

If you like 'Kind of Blue' I can only suggest you check this out, it may lack some of the accessible hooks but for my money it gives nothing away in profundity or sheer beauty. The 2001 ECM recording is absolutely top notch.

Seriously, Elk should love this.

PS While googling around I found out it was one of Richard Lehnert's 2003 R2D4. His summary is exactly what I meant to write. Doh!

PPS Hat tip to forum member DraganH who put me onto it!

Elk
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Re: Soul of Things

Tomasz Stanko is fascinating, with incredible chops.

On my list for my next album order.

Thanks!

struts
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Re: Soul of Things

Fascinating bit of trivia:

Stanko is actually on his second trumpet career, having lost all of his teeth in the 1990s. For any horn player that means the creation of an entirely new embachoure and pretty much relearning your chops from scratch. Apparently he practiced with lots of long languid notes to build up his lip in the new position, and that has perhaps informed the unhurried phrasing we hear in his latter work.

[Quoted from doublegone's review on Amazon.co.uk]

struts
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Re: Soul of Things

I am increasingly finding that the user reviews on Amazon can be a real goldmine. Here are two nicely contrasting reviews of Soul of Things which I chose to quote in full to save you, my dear audiophile siblings, the annoyance of having to click through. I do hope this is not in violation of any copyright.


Quote:
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful work from Stanko, June 13, 2002
By N. Dorward "obsessive reviewer" (Toronto, ON Canada)

Tomasz Stanko is sometimes called the "Polish Miles Davis" & this album demonstrates that he's got a deeper understanding of Davis--especially the mid-1960s group with Hancock & Shorter--than any number of American neoconservative xeroxers of the style. There's not a note on this disc which doesn't owe a debt to Miles Davis, & there's not a note on it which sound anything less than identifiably Stanko's. One thing he shares with Davis is the ability to reinvent a tune for the occasion in subtle or broad ways. The tracks here are untitled, but they are often recognizable from earlier Stanko discs; for instance, "Die Weisheit von Isidore Ducasse" from _Bosonossa_ was slightly rededicated to the "Comte de Lautreamont" on _Leosia_ (the dedicatees are the some person, the 19th-c. author of the bizarre & sickeningly perverse novel _Les Chants de Maldoror_), & is here revisited as part VI. "Maldoror's War Song" from _Bosonossa_ is part X--a particularly striking change, from a passionate free-jazz reading to this disc's graceful swinger. -- Part I on this disc is revisited as Part IX, in a longer but less intense version; the opener is one of the most memorable things I've heard in a while, a gently drifting melody carried over slowly shifting pedal points, with all four players just barely keeping time & frequently dropping into silence.

This is Stanko's working band, three young musicians I've not encountered before. They have a profound empathy with him. This disc is mostly subtle & quiet (there are two or three hard-swinging tracks through), but it's always swinging, unlike Stanko's more freeish albums. It's unlikely this year will turn up a better new jazz release--it's an outstanding disc.



Quote:
2.0 out of 5 stars wake me when it's over, June 24, 2008
By D. Lloyd

I'm a fan of ECM for the most part - I love their identity (album covers) and Manfred Eicher's overall vision and how he runs the label), but when I see the most banal and bland CDs of the ECM catalog get touted, while the most interesting and somewhat original releases get panned, I feel a futile need to toss my hat into the ring.

After plopping down the standard ECM price of $17.99 for this CD, and then later discovering it's not an import... (Made in the United States! Why are we still paying import prices for ECM CDs?), I was at least hoping for a new thought-provoking journey with ECM, but instead found myself lulled into boredom and a stifling sense of d

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